The retail sector: an opportunity for industrialisation?

  • Date: Tuesday, 24 October 2017
  • Venue: TIPS Boardroom, 234 Lange St, Nieuw Muckleneuk, Pretoria
  • For enquiries or to register please contact:


Chairperson: Nitin Gunga (the dti)

9:00 - 9:15 Opening and Welcome: Eustace Mashimbye (CEO: Proudly South African)

9:15 - 11:30 Presentation and discussion of research findings

Retail and manufacturing: Andrew Mukandila (the dti)
Supplier development in the retail sector:  Dave Kaplan (UCT and TIPS Research Associate)

Tea break

Adverse Inclusion: Tracy Ledger (TIPS Research Associate)
The spread of supermarkets in the SADC region: Impact on competition and on suppliers: Reena das Nair (CCRED)

Chairperson: Saul Levin (TIPS)

11:30 - 12:30 Panel Discussion: Does South Africa need a retail sector charter or a code of good practice?

  • Mike Morris
  • Reena das Nair
  • Tracy Ledger

Lunch: 12:30


Large general grocery retailers and supermarkets have greatly increased their market coverage in South Africa both spatially and in customer numbers over the past 20 years. Estimates are that they now control some 90% of all formal food sales, and more than 60% of total retail food sales. South African-owned supermarket chains have also grown exponentially in the rest of SADC.

Supermarkets are increasingly the gatekeepers between suppliers and end-use customers. They are often the only, or the most important, way in which suppliers, particularly smaller suppliers, can access customers. As more and more consumers purchase most or all of their food from supermarkets, so the supermarkets' power in the chain relative to other participants increases. The procurement practices of supermarkets therefore have a bearing on both small and large businesses, and can contribute or negatively impact on industrialisation efforts.

The colloquium will share research undertaken on the impact of supermarkets, their linkages to the manufacturing sector and supplier development as well as exploring the pros and cons of a code of conduct for the retail sector.