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Zambeef Products Plc Chairman: Dr Jacob Mwanza

Retailing giants link more local entrepreneurs to the consumer market


LUSAKA, ZAMBIA – January 28, 2015 – Two of Zambia’s largest consumer businesses - Zambeef Products and Shoprite – have joined forces to pledge their support for entrepreneurs.

The commitment aims to forge closer links between local suppliers and consumers under an initiative launched by the UK-government-funded Private Enterprise Programme – Zambia (PEP-Z) and supported by the two retailing giants, who recently signed a memorandum of understanding as anchor companies.

Small-scale farmers and other entrepreneurs across the country will benefit from the new programme, which is building and strengthening the capacity of Zambian micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the private sector in order to create jobs and contribute to the diversification of the economy.

PEP-Z Programme Manager Bayo Akindeinde praised the enthusiasm of Shoprite and Zambeef and said: “Both companies are already working hand-in-hand with thousands of local suppliers. The aim now is to strengthen those market linkages further and support entrepreneurs so that they are able to supply the quality and consistency of products that is vital for these large processors and suppliers.”

“Zambia’s farmers – both small-scale and commercial – have the capacity to feed the nation without the need for imports,” said Zambeef Joint Chief Executive Officer Francis Grogan. “Any programme that builds on that has to be good for our business, suppliers and the nation as a whole.”

Zambeef operates more than 120 retail outlets nationwide, including the in-store butcheries across the Shoprite chain.

Shoprite Zambia General Manager Charles Bota reiterated the message and explained: “Shoprite has a firm policy of buying from local Zambian suppliers wherever possible and we are keen to grow this market further. It makes business sense from our perspective, and can only strengthen the economy.”

PEP-Z Business Linkages Manager Andrew Kambobe added: “Zambeef and Shoprite are among Zambia’s best and most innovative companies and we are delighted that they are leading the way in helping entrepreneurs to become the conglomerates of the future.”

About the Private Enterprise Programme - Zambia (PEP-Z)
The Private Enterprise Programme-Zambia (PEP-Z) is a five-year project funded by the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID) that aims to build and strengthen the capacity of Zambian micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the private sector to create jobs and contribute to the diversification of the economy.  PEP-Z will be implemented through targeted interventions that will identify and enable entrepreneurs with the attitude and willingness to become more competitive. Women and youth will also be a focus of the programme.

The programme aims to achieve these goals through an integrated approach that has four interlinked components: Business Linkages; Business Development Services; a Business Plan Competition; and Impact Investment.

About Zambeef Products Plc
Zambeef Products Plc is the largest integrated agribusinesses in Zambia.
The group is principally involved in the production, processing, distribution and retailing of beef, chicken, pork, milk, dairy products, eggs, edible oils, stock feed and flour. The group also has large row cropping operations (principally maize, soya beans and wheat), with approximately 8,120 hectares of row crops under irrigation and 8,480 hectares of rain-fed/dry-land crops available for planting each year. The group is also in the process of rolling out its West Africa expansion in Nigeria and Ghana, as well as developing a palm project in Zambia.

It slaughters some 60,000 beef cattle and 6.2 million chickens, and processes 6.5 million litres of milk per year. The company has 121 retail outlets throughout the country, along with four wholesale depots.

More information is available at www.zambeefplc.com

About Shoprite in Zambia
Shoprite is the largest food retailer in Zambia and on the African continent. The Zambian operation now has 23 large supermarket outlets. 15 out of these 23 buildings including one shopping mall are directly owned by the Company, meaning they are here to stay. Shoprite has a footprint in nine of the ten provinces, providing shelf space for local suppliers across the country.  The Company has given direct employment to 2,600 Zambians. Information on the Shoprite Group is available at www.shopriteholdings.co.za

For media inquiries, please contact:
Gillian Langmead at Langmead & Baker Ltd
+260 979 060705
 
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