Uchumi Supermarkets

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Uchumi Supermarkets
Type Public company
Traded as KN: UCHM
Industry Retail trade
Founded 1975
Headquarters Nairobi, Kenya
Key people Jonathan Ciano
Chief Executive Officer
Products Supermarkets
Revenue Net Sales:US$170.3 million (KES:14.4 billion) (2013)
Net income Increase Aftertax: US$4.23 million (KES:357 million) (2013)
Total assets US$66.1 million (KES:5.57 billion) (2013)
Employees 1,000+ (2008)
Website Homepage

Uchumi Supermarkets, often referred to simply as Uchumi, is a Kenyan supermarket chain. The name Uchumi means "economy" in Swahili.


Uchumi is a supermarket chain headquartered in Kenya, with retail outlets in East Africa. As of May 2014, the chain is one of a number of Kenyan supermarket chains that serve the region, including market-leader Nakumatt, Tuskys, Ukwala and Naivas. Currently, Uchumi maintains outlets in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, with a view to establish a presence in Burundi, Rwanda, and South Sudan in the next few years.[1] The latest publicly available valuation, in June 2013, estimated the total company assets at about US$66.1 million (KES:5.57 billion), with shareholder equity of approximately US$34.7 million (KES:2.93 billion).[2]


The company was founded in 1975, as a public limited liability company, by three Kenyan parastatal companies, namely (a) Industrial Commercial & Development Corporation (ICDC) (b) Kenya Wine Agencies Limited (KWAL) and (c) Kenya National Trading Corporation (KNTC). The main objective at the time was to create outlets for the equitable distribution of commodities and to create retail outlets for Kenyan manufactures. In 1976, Uchumi's shareholders signed a management contract with Standa SPA, an Italian supermarket chain to train Kenyan talent to run the new enterprise. The shares of the company stock were listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) in 1992.

During the early 2000s the company encountered financial difficulties and was placed in receivership in June 2006. It was simultaneously de-listed from the NSE. Following a period of inactivity that lasted six weeks, the company resumed commercial activity at some of its stores under interim management and a caretaker administrator.[3] By January 2011, the retail chain had returned to profitability and applied to the Kenya Capital Markets Authority (KCMA), to re-list its shares on the NSE.[4] Approval to re-list on the NSE was granted in May 2011 and trading in the shares of Uchumi Supermarkets resumed on Tuesday 31 May 2011.[5]


As of May 2014, the shares of stock of the retail chain are listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE), where they trade under the symbol: UCHM. The shares are also cross-listed on the Rwanda Stock Exchange (RSE),[6] and on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE).[7] The company obtained regulatory approval to cross-list on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE), effective 15 August 2014.[8]

The five largest shareholders in the company as of December 2012, are listed in the table below:[9]

Uchumi Supermarkets Stock Ownership
Rank Name of Owner Percentage Ownership
1 Kenya's Ministry of Trade 13.40
2 Karim Jamal 7.56
3 Kenya Wine Agencies Limited (KWAL Holdings) 4.28
4 Equity Nominees: Ac:00111 4.12
5 ICDC 2.75
6 Others via the Stock Exchanges in East Africa 67.89
Total 100.00


As of June 2014, the supermarket chain maintains the following outlets in East Africa:[10]

Branches in Kenya[edit]

  • List of Uchumi Supermarkets branches in Kenya:[11]
  1. City Square Hypermat – Aga Khan Walk, Nairobi
  2. Langata Hypermat – Langata Road, Nairobi
  3. Koinange Branch – Monrovia Street, Nairobi
  4. Capital Centre Hypermat - Mombasa Road, Nairobi
  5. Ngong Hypermat – Ngong Road, Nairobi
  6. Sarit Hypermat – Sarit Center, Westlands, Nairobi
  7. Tajj Mall Hypermat - Embakasi, Nairobi[12]
  8. Adams Arcade Branch - Ngong Road, Nairobi
  9. Buruburu Branch – Buru Buru Housing Estate, Nairobi
  10. Jipange Branch – Thika Road, Nairobi
  11. Jogoo Road Branch – Jogoo Road, Nairobi
  12. Nairobi West Branch – Nairobi West Shopping Center, Nairobi
  13. Koinange Branch - Monrovia Street, Nairobi
  14. Ongata Rongai Branch – Ongata Rongai, Nairobi
  15. Westlands Branch – Westlands, Nairobi
  16. Eldoret Branch – Muliro Road, Downtown, Eldoret
  17. Eldoret-Sugarland Branch – Sugarland Building, Oloo Street, Eldoret
  18. Embu Branch – Cylet Plaza Building, Kubukubu Road, Embu
  19. Karatina Branch – Karatina, Nyeri
  20. Kericho Branch - Kericho
  21. Meru Branch – Kenyatta Road, Downtown Shopping District, Meru
  22. Kisii Branch – Kisii[13]
  23. Nakuru Branch – Mosque Road, Downtown, Nakuru[14]
  24. Juja Branch - Thika-Nairobi Highway, Juja
  25. Syokimau Branch - Syokimau
  26. Maua Branch - Maua
  27. Kisumu Branch - Kisumu[15]

Branches in Uganda[edit]

  • List of Uchumi Supermarkets branches in Uganda:[16]
  1. Main Kampala Branch – Garden City Mall, Yusuf Lule Road, Kampala
  2. Kabalagala Branch – Ggaba Road, Kabalagala, Kampala
  3. Gulu Branch – Lira-Gulu Road, Gulu[17][18]
  4. Namasuba Branch – Freedom City Mall, Entebbe Road, Namasuba, Kampala[19]
  5. Nateete Branch – Nateete[20]
  6. Mbale Branch – Mbale[21]
  7. Mbarara Branch - Mbarara[22]

Branches in Tanzania[edit]

  1. Dar es Salaam Branch – Quality Center Mall, Julius Nyerere Road, Dar es Salaam[23]
  2. Dar es Salaam Branch II - Dar es Salaam - Opened in February 2014
  3. Dar es Salaam Branch III - Sinza, Dar es Salaam - Opened in April 2014[24]
  4. Dar es Salaam Branch IV - Kijitonyama, Dar es Salaam[25]

Closure and reopening[edit]

Uchumi closed down, albeit temporarily, in June 2006 after 30 years of business. [26] At the time, its closure was described as "one of the greatest corporate disasters in independent Kenya history". However, a government-led rescue plan was initiated and consequently five Uchumi outlets, all in Nairobi, were reopened on 15 July 2006.


As of May 2014, Uchumi operates twenty-seven stores in Kenya, seven stores in Uganda and three stores in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The company also plans two openings in Juba, South Sudan and another two new stores in Rwanda, in the next two years. Uchumi expects to open seven new stores in Kenya as well, within the next twelve months.[27]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Herbling, David (4 September 2013). "Uchumi’s First Cash Call Since 2006 to Open In November". Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  2. ^ Uchumi, . (2013). "Audited 30 June 2013 Financial Statement". Uchumi Supermarkets. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  3. ^ Uchumi, . "The History of Uchumi Supermarkets". Uchumi Supermarkets. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  4. ^ Wafula, David (26 January 2011). "Uchumi Plays Catch-Up In Battle for Shoppers". Business Daily Africa. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  5. ^ Wahome, Mwaniki (25 May 2011). "Uchumi Shares 'Expected' to Trade at Higher Value". Daily Nation. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  6. ^ Mugwe, David (14 October 2013). "Uchumi Supermarkets Becomes Third to Cross-List on Kigali Bourse". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Mugwe, David (13 November 2013). "Uchumi Shares Start Trading on Kampala Bourse". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Ciuri, Simon (5 August 2014). "Uchumi Gets Approval To Cross-List On Dar Bourse". Business Daily Africa (Nairobi). Retrieved 5 August 2014. 
  9. ^ Herbling, David (12 December 2012). "Billionaire Overtakes KWAL As Uchumi’s Top Owner". Business Daily Africa. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  10. ^ Herbling, David (4 June 2014). "Uchumi Delays Cash Call to Allow for Treasury’s Budget". Business Daily Africa. Retrieved 5 June 2014. 
  11. ^ "List of Uchumi Branches In Kenya". Uchumi Supermarkets. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  12. ^ Wafula, Paul (4 April 2011). "Uchumi Revamps Board In Fight to Regain Top Slot". Business Daily Africa. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  13. ^ Star, Reporter (21 November 2011). "Uchumi Boasts New Outlets In Uganda, Tanzania". Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  14. ^ ., . (23 January 2011). "Kenya: Uchumi Back In Nakuru After Five-Year Absence". Daily Nation on The Web. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  15. ^ Ciuri, Simon (16 February 2014). "Uchumi Kicks off Expansion Plans With 4 New Branches". Business Daily Africa (Nairobi). Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  16. ^ Gachiri, John (30 January 2012). "Uchumi Gets Second Expansion Plan Right With 24 Percent Rise In Profit". Business Daily Africa. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  17. ^ "Uchumi Supermarkets Gulu Branch". Uchumi Supermarkets. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  18. ^ Khisa, Isaac (30 June 2012). "Uchumi To Open Six More Branches". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  19. ^ Tracy Gwambe, and Julius Businge (5 May 2012). "Blossoming Supermarkets". The Independent (Uganda). Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  20. ^ Namono, Lydia (20 March 2012). "Foreign Retailers Flooding Uganda Market". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  21. ^ Anyanzwa, James (12 April 2014). "Uchumi Opens Four Branches Across East African Countries". Standard Digital Media (Kenya). Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  22. ^ By, Editor2 (13 November 2013). "Uchumi To Open Up Branches In Mbale And Mbarara". Summit Business Review (Kampala). Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  23. ^ Walubengo, Nick (3 July 2014). "Uchumi To Expand Branch Network". Abacus.co.ke. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  24. ^ Ciuri, Simon (19 February 2014). "Uchumi Opens Two Units In Dar es Salaam". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  25. ^ Press, Release (2013). "Uchumi Supermarket To Open Three More Outlets In Dar es Salaam Come January 2014". Focus Tanzania Quoting Corporate Digest. Retrieved 5 August 2014. 
  26. ^ "Kenyan Shop Chain Shuts Its Doors". BBC News. 2 June 2006. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  27. ^ Munda, Constant (4 September 2013). "Kenya: Uchumi Supermarkets Full Year Profit Up 30 Per Cent". The Star Newspaper (Nairobi) via AllAfrica.com. Retrieved 30 May 2014. 

External links[edit]