Fast-food restaurants operator, Simbisa Brands Limited, says it intends to grow its footprint by adding 92 new stores in the 2022 financial year at an investment of US$19, 3 million.
Of these stores, eight are earmarked to be Chicken Inn drive-through sites in line with the increased focus on diversifying the group’s customer services channel. Four will be casual dining brands while the other four will be new food trailer or container concepts.
Simbisa currently has a footprint in Zimbabwe, Ghana, Mauritius, Namibia (which has been franchised), Kenya, Zambia and DRC, another franchised market.
The fast-food restaurant operator’s plans to grow its network come at a time when Governments are gradually opening up the economies after a number of lockdown measures necessitated by the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“As we see our operating markets adjusting to the new normal trading environment, with an easing in restrictions and recovery in capacity, the intention is to accelerate growth in our footprint whilst still ensuring strong organic growth and recovery in our existing business, chief executive Dioniso said.
The group said its revenues were negatively impacted by Covid-19, including through reduced trading hours, limited customer sit-in numbers and overall depressed macroeconomic conditions in the various markets.
“We are encouraged by government plans and the increasing availability and uptake of Covid-19 vaccines in the countries we operate in. Currently, over 80 percent of our Zimbabwe employees have been fully vaccinated.
“The business is confident of a swift upturn in customer counts as restrictions are gradually relaxed as witnessed earlier in the just-ended financial year,” said Mr. Addington Chinake in a statement accompanying the Simbisa brand’s full-year financial results to 30 June 2021,” the group said.
Despite the challenges, Simbisa said regional expansion continued through the opening of 22 new counters, of which 16 were opened in east Africa’s Kenya. Namibia has been converted into a franchised market effective July 1, 2021.
This is on the backdrop of strong trading volumes in the group’s financial year to June 2021 despite limitations that were experienced in trading hours.
In the year to June 2021, Simbisa recorded a 108 percent jump in revenue to close the year at $18, 789 billion from $9, 044 billion realised in 2020, while profit before tax surged by 33 percent to $2,165 billion from $1,631 billion reported in the same period in 2020.
The fast-food restaurant operator posted a 97 percent growth in profit for the year to close at $2,151 billion from $1,092 billion realised in the prior comparable period.
The group’s operating profit surged by 233 percent to $2,412 billion (inflation adjusted terms) in comparison to $725 million recorded last year.
Going forward the group also hinted at investing in growing the Dial –a-Delivery (DAD) business across all its markets. -Herald