Pepkor: 500-plus stores looted and damaged, but most will reopen in September

JSE-listed clothes retail big Pepkor now says extra that 500 of its shops in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng have been looted and broken throughout the riots in July.

However greater than 350 of those shops are anticipated to be “up and operating by the tip of September”.

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The group mentioned in an emailed replace on Wednesday that it’s making “important strides in its restoration of affected operations because the civil unrest skilled final month”.

In a earlier Sens update issued in mid-July, the group initially famous that round 489 shops have been affected.

Learn: The scale of the destruction

It mentioned the affected shops that “skilled various levels of injury” represents round 10% of the group’s general retailer footprint.

“The enterprise has turned its focus and dedication to the rebuilding of their shops within the affected areas and is proud to be a part of these efforts the place the mutual help and resilience of South Africans are so properly exhibited,” Pepkor added in its newest assertion.

“The preliminary evaluation section has been accomplished and we’re working with a number of suppliers to safe the required inventory, gear, IT infrastructure and different supplies to reopen our shops,” mentioned Pepkor CEO Leon Lourens.

“Throughout a traditional 12 months, we open 300 new shops. Now, added to our customary new retailer opening schedule, we’re reopening greater than 350 shops in roughly two months with the rest of the shops to be opened earlier than December,” Lourens identified.

“The reopening of the remaining shops might be delayed as a result of circumstances outdoors our management comparable to structural damages to the properties,” he added.

“The groups in our working firms are working across the clock to make this occur as rapidly as doable. Our main goal is to get again to serving the shoppers in these communities and making their lives simpler and higher.”

Learn: Over 200 Shoprite group stores looted

Pepkor identified that its provide chain is now totally operational and deliveries to its footprint of greater than 5 000 shops are again to regular.

“It’s pleasing to see that our provide chain is again at full capability and credit score goes to our inner restoration groups who’ve labored tirelessly to make this doable,” mentioned Lourens.

As a part of Pepkor’s restoration efforts, the group famous that it’s doing its finest to supply job safety and proceed wage funds to the 1000’s of workers who have been impacted.

“We have been capable of get emergency aid to our workers inside one week of the unrest. This included supply of 5 667 meals parcels and I’m extraordinarily grateful that we’ve got the means to help our loyal workers in order that they’ll present for his or her households,” mentioned Lourens.

Learn: TFG: 198 looted and damaged stores remain closed

“As a enterprise whose key precedence is to serve their hundreds of thousands of loyal clients and make a constructive distinction of their lives, we settle for our duty in the direction of the native communities and greater than R3.5 million has been donated to help affected workers and surrounding communities, together with a donation of 70 tonnes of maize meal,” he added.

“It’s our brave, agile and resilient groups who’ve performed a elementary function in our restoration and rebuilding course of throughout this difficult time. The lengthy hours and dedication these people have proven demonstrates the calibre of our folks and the wholesome tradition of our enterprise,” mentioned Lourens.

Pepkor, which employs 50 000 folks and has the biggest retail retailer footprint in southern Africa with greater than 5 000 shops, was the worst affected clothes retailer when it comes to variety of retailer affected within the current unrest.

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