It is only a matter of time before the country’s malls and shopping complexes witness a pop-out of yet another fried chicken outlet courtesy of Choppies Enterprises Limited.
In a strategic move that could shake the fried chicken market in the country by storm, the retail giant has confirmed its intentions to set up standalone Choppies Fried Chicken (CFC) stores across the country.
The first restaurant is expected to be opened in the capital Gaborone during the current financial year. If successful, the group will then roll out more restaurants across the country and possibly beyond the borders of Botswana where Choppies has retail stores.
Choppies Finance Director, Sanooj Pullarote confirmed the latest development to Sunday Standard on Thursday adding that the strategy is to roll out the model on “trial” mode first.
“The CFC brand has been accepted well and has achieved 49 percent sales growth in the last 12 months”, Pullarote said.
The retail giant, which operates in eight African countries, has been selling CFC through counters in some of its main retail stores. During 2017, the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) and Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) listed entity rolled out CFC counters in 23 Botswana stores whilst at the same time adding new 123 SKUs to the range including five types of burgers.
In neighbouring South Africa, Choppies rolled out its CFC brand in 11 Jwayelani stores, which constitutes about 1 percent of the company revenue. At the same time, still during the year under review the retail giant started rolling out CFC counters in 15 stores if the North West region.
Stiff fried chicken competition
With Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) having been the country’s undisputed market leader in fried chicken over the years, Choppies is believed to be well positioning itself to claim part of KFC’s market share. KFC was almost closed down in mid 2016 following financial troubles that faced its then owners. The America originating company has however remained in business and recently announced its partnership with a local company for the supply of Chakalaka.
Other competitors in the fried chicken space includes old timers, Chicken Licken which originates from South Africa whilst lately a new entrant ÔÇô Chicken Express also made its presence felt opening several stores across the capital Gaborone and nearby villages like Tlokweng and Mogoditshane.