Tuskys woes increase as more auctioneers raid

Tuskys' branch at Eldo Centre Mall in Eldoret town.

Photo credit: Jared Nyataya | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • The development that caught shoppers unawares comes a few weeks after auctioneers temporarily closed a Tuskys store at Kisumu’s United Mall over Sh26 million rent arrears.
  • The branch was however opened a day later after Tuskys reportedly paid Sh15 million and promised to clear the balance.

Auctioneers Monday shut down a Tuskys Supermarket store in Nairobi’s Greenspan Mall over Sh30 million rent arrears, just days after raiding and carting away goods from its Juja City mall outlet.

In an Monday morning incident, which highlighting the depth of the retailer’s financial woes, Sannex Auctioneers stopped Tuskys from opening its doors and is set to auction its stock next Tuesday.

“They owe the landlord over Sh30 million in rent arrears. The money has been pending for a long duration,” said a representative from Sannex Auctioneers in an interview yesterday.

The development that caught shoppers unawares comes a few weeks after auctioneers temporarily closed a Tuskys store at Kisumu’s United Mall over Sh26 million rent arrears.

The branch was however opened a day later after Tuskys reportedly paid Sh15 million and promised to clear the balance.

It also comes days after Tuskys, which owes suppliers over Sh6 billion, sent its employees packing following the closure of its five branches in Uganda where it faces a liquidation case.

Electronic appliances distributor, Hotpoint Limited filed a petition to wind up the retail chain after Tuskys paid a paltry Sh11.7 million in response to a statutory demand last May when the unpaid supplies bill stood at Sh259.9 million.

Its Kenyan employees are also working without salaries after successfully obtaining a High Court order stopping the retailer from slashing their pay.

In a race to prevent collapse, Tuskys is seeking to sell majority stake to a consortium made up of a private equity firm and an undisclosed foreign retailer.

It is seeking to raise Sh2 billion short-term debt from an unnamed private equity firm based in Mauritius, with the funds aimed at stabilising operations.

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