Suppliers pledge to support Nakumatt into recovery

One of Nakumatt supermarket branches in Nairobi. The retailer is currently under an administrator. PHOTO: COURTESY

Key suppliers of the troubled retailer, Nakumatt have pledged to support the recent appointment of an Administrator

Speaking at a meeting convened to update Nakumatt’s suppliers on the ongoing developments, Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) Chairperson, Florah Mutahi said that will continue to extend its support to the retailers who provide a complementary market for manufactured goods.

She however stressed the need to beef up governance frameworks for the retail sector.

”It is important for retailers to adopt contemporary governance principles that can help avert the current challenges facing the local market,” said Mutahi

The Nakumatt Holdings Administrator Peter Kahi confirmed that ongoing plans to maintain the business through a supplier partnership model are now on course.

He said implored the retailers’ suppliers and shoppers to continue providing their support, as efforts to formulate a rescue plan get under way

The chance of growth, the Administrator explained, will however be anchored by renewed support from Nakumatt suppliers, shoppers and other stakeholders including staff members.

He confirmed that plans to restock up to 20 Nakumatt branches by next month had been drawn up. Such restocking, he noted will provide an avenue to grow customer traffic in the branches and much needed revenue.

The chance of recovery for Nakumatt is fair and can be accelerated by the support of specific stakeholders such as suppliers to fuel its engine. The new legal frameworks provide a good platform for the administrator to work for the benefit of all creditors,”said Kahi

The success of the administration process, and ultimately turnaround of Nakumatt business, will be hinged on, among others, strategic retail stores management which we believe will be achieved through the appointment of Tusker Mattresses as an operating Manager,” Kahi said.

As an operating manager, Tusker Mattresses will provide specific technical services geared at avoiding further erosion on Nakumatt’s operating units.

Last year, Nakumatt management had expressed apprehension that in the absence of an administration order, there would have been a significant danger of the firm being wound up with, its employees, lenders, landlords and suppliers standing to suffer significant losses, with a broader impact on thousands of farmers, small businesses and traders whose livelihoods are dependent on the business.