Event Info

Why Invest

I recently visited the newly renovated Neighborly Lifestyle Grocery Store. Upon my arrival I was greeted by the store owner, who said, “Welcome to your grocery store” – a very ‘neighborly’ thing to do and which made me feel right at home. Because Neighborly isn’t just any store, but my store, since I am part of the community. I began my grocery shopping and came across a group of very eager and excited young shoppers. I overheard one say “Yoooh! ngigcwele ngalestolo esisha!” which translates to, “I am sooo psyched/excited about this new store!”

220603 Informal Retail Article Founder CEO of Neighborly Lifestyle Grocery Store
Meet the Founder & CEO of Neighborly Lifestyle Grocery Store: Mpange Chapeshamano

Neighborly was established in 2021 in a smaller location and recently moved to a newly renovated and larger 400m2 premises in Pimville, Soweto. Neighborly is a grocery store answering the lifestyle needs of township shoppers – a spaza shop offering its shoppers a great shopping experience. Neighborly was created to ‘be everything’ to its informal shoppers. 

Historically informal shoppers have travelled daily to work in metropolis and urban areas and there have enjoyed the luxury experiences the city offers. However now informal shoppers are not as exposed to these experiences and places as much because they work from home. In comes Neighborly, which seeks to bring what shoppers want, know and enjoy back into the township. Informal shoppers need a different township experience where they can take a break, enjoy a quick meal or a freshly ground cup of coffee while working from home, just as they would experience in the city.

Neighborly Lifestyle Grocery Store was created because of this growing need and preference for local brought on by the pandemic, allowing informal shoppers to eat and shop in close proximity to their homes, schools, transport hubs, etc. Neighborly seeks to create a space that this more than just a grocery store, where shoppers can access good food and good experiences to enhance their lifestyle.

How does Neighborly dignify the spaza shop grocery experience?

  1. Neighborly provides a safe, walk-in, clean, organised, well merchandised and affordable store. It aims to offer informal shoppers value, while ensuring they feel deserving of a dignified, world-class grocery shopping experience.

    220603 Informal Retail Article Neighborly store environment
  2. It offers convenience. Neighborly is currently on UberEATS, enabling shoppers to order groceries through the app, get them delivered or the shopper can collect in store.

    220603 Informal Retail Article Neigborly UberEats
  3. It repackages groceries to fit your pocket. The Neighborly butchery offers shoppers fresh quality meats under R50. 220603 Informal Retail Article Neighborly Butchery


Neighborly is an aesthetically pleasing store, uses quirky and cool Instagram-able in-store designs, paintings and trinkets and encourage shoppers to engage with the store’s look and feel, take pictures and post them on the #Neighborly Grocery Store Instagram page. 

Neighborly prides itself on “Local is Lekker”, working with successful partners who supply some great products to the store:

  • Nele Bakes – Specialty biscuits, scones and muffins  
    “Creamy and crunchy butter biscuits to enjoy with a delightful cup of tea.”

    220603 Informal Retail Article Neigborly Nele Bakes special biscuits
  • Brown Opulence – Homemade bath salts and candles 
    “Smells like home, beautifully arranged luxury bath salts and candles that could be straight out of an upmarket beauty store.”

    220603 Informal Retail Article Neighborly Brown Opulence bath salts and candles
  • Na Nyosi – Local honey provider
    “The golden Na Nyosi honey to sweeten my tea is the BEEst way to start my day.”

    220603 Informal Retail Article Neigborly Na Nyosi local honey

The informal market is fast becoming an entertainment, tourism and lifestyle hub. Informal shoppers are benefiting from the investment and gentrification of informal communities. The development of new restaurants, lifestyle and entertainment centres, township immersions and tourism have shown shoppers the beauty of the townships they live in, so much so that those who live in metros and urban areas travel to townships to experience the fun and vibrant environment.

Stay abreast of the evolution of the informal market to create new and relevant opportunities for collaboration.  

Use this link to go on a virtual visit of the Neighborly Lifestyle Grocery Store.

The Trade Intelligence Informal Retail Channel report provides a comprehensive overview of changing market dynamics and nuances that exist in this ever-changing market. This report is an essential guide on how to win within this channel. 

220428 Informal Retail Channel Report small ad



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