Tuskys to move its stores online in April

TUSKYS is testing an online shopping model, which the retailer said will be used to recreate virtual shops for its 52 stores, to enable shoppers order items from the comfort of their homes of offices.

Chief executive Dan Githua said this is part of a strategy that will keep Tuskys competitive in the future, amid changes in retail business due to increased use of technology.

“We want to go online to complement our physical stores,” he said in an interview on Friday.

Tuskys chief operating officer Peter Laparachao said the online shopping platform will be up and running by April this year and they have teamed up with Safaricom and Wells Fargo to ensure efficiency in the model.

“Safaricom will help us in terms of payments while Wells Fargo will be involved in delivery of goods to customers during the day,” he said.

Online retail or e-retail is growing across the world, pushed by highly busy consumers who have turned to using digital devices to help them shop.

A recent study by Deloitte indicates that the trend is expected to grow in the future.

Other local brick and mortar retailers, lead by Nakumatt, Naivas and Uchumi are yet to position themselves online.

The local e-retail market is currently dominated by Jumia, Kaymu and Rupu.

Tuskys, which is the second-largest retail chain in turnover, is a family-owned business which has been in operation for more than 20 years now.

It has in the last two years successfully introduced professional management, which is also a strategy to propel future grow plans, which includes listing in the Nairobi Securities Exchange in 2019.

Laparachao said they expect the online platform to increase Tuskys sales by 10 per cent by December this year.

“This model might even double our sales in the near future,” he said.

He said Tuskys will have an upper hand in the market because all the partners involved in the plan are well known to consumers.

“The initial problem with getting into e-retail is creating trust because customers are skeptical about paying money to entities they do not know. Tuskys, Wells Fargo and Safaricom are three brands that are well known to Kenyans and customers can easily access any of them when there is a problem,” he said.