The landscape of retail market in Tunisia is taking a new dimension with the authorization granted to the “Group MEUBLATEX-Elmouradi” of Neji Mhiri for the establishment of a large commercial area in the governorate of Sousse.
The site will be built on plots of land covering an area of fifty thousand hundred and fifty eight square meters (150158m ²) located in the municipalities of Hammam Sousse and Akouda in the Governorate of Sousse, under a decree published in JORT dated January 29, 2010. The Hyper, which will operate under the brand of Hyper U, fourth group of large retailers in France, will be headed by Mourad Mhiri, son of Neji Mhiri.
According to Group MEUBLATEX bond market prospectus, “a company dedicated to mass distribution would give birth to a hypermarket. The same document states that “in 2008, a new company (and Trade and Retail) was established, dedicated to mass distribution with a capital of 1 million dinars.
Another hypermarket would emerge in Sfax. It will be launched by Invest Med Company (the company that brings together Bayahi Poulina groups in managing the Magasin Général Company) and that filed its application for opening this space dedicated to retail distribution, likely under the MG brand.
Both will join the three major players that are already well-established: Mabrouk Group, operating Monoprix since 1999 and that has partnered with the French group Casino in the segment of hypermarkets (Géant ) Chaïbi Group, which started in hypermarkets segment (Carrefour) and is growing on the supermarket one through the Champion brand, and, finally, the Magasin General brand.
Taken as a whole and in all its forms especially supermarkets and hypermarkets, mass distribution in Tunisia controls nearly 20% of the distribution market including groceries.
The development of mass distribution in Tunisia is dependent on economic development but mainly on higher income of consumers whose purchasing power increased significantly from 3,576 dinars in 2004 to 5135 dinars in 2009 to approach 7,000 dinars by 2014.
Tunisia’s mass distribution should know in the coming years a very large development insofar as the country remains below the 40 to 50% market share in so-called middle-income countries and around 70% in developed ones.
Anticipating these developments, lawmaker set a legal framework through the Act No. 2009-69 of August 12, 2009 on trade distribution whose goal is to continue the policy of openness and market liberalization already initiated by the Act of July 9, 1991 on competition and prices that hallowed the principle of free competition in Tunisian law. The new legislation provides a legal framework that addresses the known changes experienced by the mass distribution sector in recent years. It is intended to reorganize and modernize the mass trade distribution while ensuring the balance between different stakeholders