Pharmacy chain Haltons will receive $3 million (Sh300 million) from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) towards its Sh1 billion expansion as it looks to grow footprint outside Nairobi.
The expansion project will place Haltons among the major pharmaceutical chains in Kenya.
The company, owned by PE fund Fanisi Capital, Mary Ngige and its founder Louis Machogu, currently has 52 stores.
“Through the proposed project, the company is looking at rolling out additional pharmacy outlets, targeting the underserved middle- to low-income market, build a central warehouse and distribution centre and upgrade its IT systems,” the IFC said in disclosure notes.
“The company’s existing and new stores are/and will be located in strategic locations across major cities in Kenya and the East Africa region.”
The retail pharmacy chain dispenses prescription and non-prescription drugs, health checks such as blood pressure, blood sugar, blood cholesterol levels and advice on management of blood pressure, gout and diabetes.
Haltons targets busy and strategically located shopping malls or stand-alone buildings situated in residential areas for its outlets.
The firm last year signed an agreement with Vivo Energy to have drug stores located at Shell service stations as part of the plan to expand its outlets to 200 in two years. It has a similar arrangement with Tuskys Supermarkets.
Fanisi, an IFC investee fund, bought into Haltons in September 2013 when it acquired an undisclosed stake for Sh300 million ($3 million).
At the time, the pharmacy chain operated only four outlets.
The PE-backed expansion by Haltons mirrors that of pharmacy retail chain Goodlife — formerly known as Mimosa Pharmacy—where Catalyst Fund bought a stake in September 2014.