Saturday, January 22, 2022

Jobs safe as Spar acquires Food Lovers Market

Tsetseng Retail Group, which trades as Spar supermarket, has reassured employees at their new franchise acquisition, Food Lovers Market, that their jobs are safe.

After being given the go ahead to acquire the Food Lovers Market located in Rail Park Mall, The Spar Group immediately committed to saving jobs of employees at their new franchise acquisition. The Spar Group, one of the oldest in the country, was given a go-ahead by the Competition Authority to acquire assets and under-takings of Food Lovers Market, a relatively new player in the domestic retail market.

“Following an application for a possible merger by the two involved companies, the Competition Authority determined to conditionally authorise the proposed transaction on the grounds that analysis of the facts of the case showed that there were no substantive competition concerns that will arise in the grocery retailing market in Gaborone,” read a statement from the Competition Authority.

Following notification by the two companies, researchers at the Competition Authority said they found that the proposed transaction is not likely to result in substantial lessening of competition. The Authority researchers submitted that the proposed merger would not endanger continuity of service, due to the existence of post-merger competitive pressure posed by Choppies Group of companies, which is considered a dominant player, as well as other South African chain stores such as Pick n Pay and Shoprite. The entry of Spar at Rail Park Mall is anticipated to provide effective competition at the commuters’ mall by way of offering a feasible alternative for low cost substitutability with respect to these existing competitors.

At the same time, the Authority said implementation of the proposed merger is not expected to result in the merged entity attaining a dominant position in Gaborone. In making its decision, the Authority said it took into consideration the Tsetseng Retail Group commitments that it will continue to support local producers by sourcing supplies from them wherever their stores are located and also employ all the existing staff on their existing terms and conditions of service.

Subject to these commitments, and pursuant to the provisions of section 55 of the Competition Act of Botswana, the Authority said it had approved the acquisition of assets and undertakings of Kimbo Investments at Rail Park Mall by Tsetseng Retail Group with the conditions that the Group commits to buy from local producers. Meanwhile, the Authority cautioned that as stated under section 66 of the Act, this approval does not override or negate any other mandatory statutory approvals or processes that any of the parties to this merger must comply with under the Laws of Botswana.

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