Following a decade-long period of growth, in which formal retail supplies more than tripled, Nigeria’s retail sector faced several challenging years. Macroeconomic volatility, a recession in 2016 and the naira’s rapid depreciation impacted retailers and consumers alike. Likewise, both purchasing power and household incomes declined, while input costs and vacancy rates simultaneously increased. Despite these recent economic challenges, the country remains one of Africa’s most attractive retail investment destinations for local and foreign investors. As retailers move to capitalise on opportunities in the sector, stakeholders anticipate that developers will increasingly shift their strategy towards smaller, localised retail developments offering essential grocery, pharmaceutical and clothing items. In the longer term resurgent middle-class growth, supported by improving oil prices and strengthening macroeconomic fundamentals, should see a return to large-scale, high-end regional and mixed-use retail centres.
This chapter contains an interview with Olaide Agboola, Managing Partner, Purple Capital.