A Shoprite retail store in South Africa. The retailers are contemplating entry into the Kenyan market. [Photo/timeslive.co.za]

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Shoprite Chief Executive Officer, Pieter Engelbrecht, has said that plans are underway to take over outlets vacated by Nakumatt holdings.

Director, Gerhard Fritz, who runs Shoprite business outside South Africa in an interview with Bloomberg confirmed that the retailers were in talks with property owners with regards to nine available outlets in Kenya but nothing solid had signed off.

This is the first time that the Cape Town-based retailer has shown interest in the Kenyan market.

 It joins France-based Carrefour, the second largest retailer in the world by revenue and Massmart controlled by Wal-Mart Stores Inc, which operates under the brand name Game.

The entry of Shoprite marks a final end for family-owned Nakumatt holdings, which in 2014 took over Shoprite stores in Tanzania as it was expanding regionally.

The retailer has suffered under gross mismanagement and is now hit by a debt burden of Sh31 billion.

There are also plans underway to take over two of Nakumatt’s store sites in Uganda.

Shoprite operates in Uganda, Tanzania and has a strong presence in Southern, Central and West Africa.

According to the just-released annual report, the Cape Town-based retailers had 2,689 stores in 15 countries across the continent.