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By Vukosi Maluleke

Digital Journalist


Not Rasta, but Tiger Brands: Here’s who’s behind those spaza shop murals

Here are four ways Tiger Brand wants to make buying and selling at the local spaza easier.


If you thought Rasta was behind the colourful murals of some of your favourite household brands on the walls of your trusted township spazas – think again!

Tiger Brands is the mastermind behind many of the attention-grabbing works of art.

The food and beverage giant has a massive plan to increase its township footprint, which go beyond pictures on a wall.

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Exploring township economy

Tiger Brands has partnered with township midi-wholesalers and locally-based spaza shops and started the “robust Route-to-Market” plan for shopkeepers. The intiative aims to bring bulk stock to township midi-wholesalers located in close proximity to local spazas and supermarkets.

Bringing stock to township traders, reducing delivery costs and increasing delivery turnaround time for orders. This will help shop owners who often solely man the till on their own and have no time to visit wholesale stores to re-stock.

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Cashless trade

Tiger Brands Chief Customer Officer, Luigi Ferrini said the local informal market remains largely untapped, with statistics showing faster growth than modern trade.

Tiger Brands has also introduced a mobile cashless payment and order platform.

“It is an easy process with delivery of stock from a midi-wholesaler to a spaza store or supermarket within 48 hours,” said the giant.  

Roaring unemployment away

As part of the initiative, Tiger Brands has employed nearly 200 sales representatives within select communities countrywide, who are responsible for liaising between midi-wholesalers and spaza shops.

Tembisa’s Area Supervisor Philemon Seipono told The Citizen, the programme alleviates unemployment.

“This programme really benefits us,” said Seipono. “We started as time reps, but now I can tell you there are about 200 of us”.

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Praising the program, Seipono said shop owners benefit from the convenient order and delivery process.

“Our traders don’t have to close shop to go buy [stock] at the cash & carry – we come to you!” Seipono told The Citizen.

The supervisor said reps visit shops to conduct inventory checks to find out which products need to be restocked, which Seipono said simplifies the shopping process for traders.

Shop owners “don’t have to spend a cent” on delivery since it’s done at no extra cost to them.  

“We’re here to help them,” Seipono concluded.

A bright future

Tiger Brands said it plans to create an additional 74 jobs by end of September 2023, while expanding its reach and support to 130 000 stores within the next 5 years.

The FMCG also plans to increase its general trade store network from 46 500 to 50 000 by the end of 2023.

Quick facts about the informal sector

  • Contributes at least 6% to GDP (Stats SA, 2021)
  • Makes up R184bn of the total R716 FMCG market – 26% (Trade Intelligence, 2022)
  • Accounts for one-third of local jobs (Stats SA,2021)
  • 70% of SA households buy from informal traders (Trade Intelligence, 2022).
  • 107 000 people joined sector in the first quarter of 2023 (Stats SA, 2023).

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