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Top brands take up space at former Nakumatt store

By James Wanzala | August 20th 2020
Carrefour Mega store along Uhuru Highway. [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

The site of the former Nakumatt Mega along Uhuru Highway is now occupied by top global retailers, with Carrefour as the anchor tenant.

It houses Carrefour’s second largest hypermarket in Kenya, extending to around 100,000 square feet, and 20 other brands including LC Waikiki, City Walk and Goodlife Pharmacy.

The building has been fully refurbished by the owners, Car and General, and has total lettable floor area of over 140,000 square feet with basement and external parking for over 250 cars.

Emerge Developments, real estate managers for Car and General, oversaw the refurbishment and letting of the project and see the success of the mall as evidence that some of the recent doom and gloom about the retail sector can be overblown.

“While there has clearly been much difficulty for retailers and caterers alike during the Covid pandemic, we have always had a waiting list of retailers keen to take space in the refurbished mall,” said Graeme Reid, development director at Emerge.

“This goes to show that the shopping centre market is far from dead when the development is well-located and well-conceived.”

High footfall

Car and General Managing Director Vijay Gidoomal is upbeat about the prospects for the centre, given the high level of footfall and retailer demand.

“We signed leases through the depths of the lockdown, showing the demand for an established and well-known location,” he said.

“This has a substantial daytime catchment being on the edge of the industrial area and within walking distance of the CBD. The mall is targeting convenience as it is caters for passing commuters using  Mombasa  Road.” 

Nakumatt shut down almost all its stores in the country, most of them in prime locations, after running into financial problems. 

Nakumatt Mega was the retail chain’s most profitable outlet, bringing in Sh12.7 billion in the three years to February 2017.

It closed down in 2018 despite efforts by the retailer’s administrtator Peter Kahi to save the business from collapse.  

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