And while we’re on the subject of that large mass of land that sits at the top of our country like an ornate if slightly lopsided head dress of some sort, it’s not just South African retailers looking to Africa to beef up the old bottom line, oh, no. There’s Carrefour, for instance, which has partnered with distributor CFAO to open shops in eight sub-Saharan African countries by 2015, starting with Abidjan‚ Ivory Coast in 2015 then heading into Nigeria‚ Ghana‚ Cameroon‚ Congo‚ Democratic Republic of the Congo‚ Gabon and Senegal in quick succession. CFAO, which will own 55% of the JV, is controlled by Kering, which also owns Gucci, and targets a modest R13billion annually in its first decade of operations, including revenue generated by the malls it plans to open.
Comment: Carrefour has a sizeable presence in Morocco, Tunisia and Egypt already, but their expansion elsewhere has been rumoured for years. It is to be hoped for their sake that they have not missed le bateau.