Business booms in the North

30 December 2014 | Business

Northern businesses operated like a well-oiled machine this festive season by ensuring quality service and availability of products at all times. Unlike previous years when stock shortage were reported at several businesses during the Christmas rush, this year warehouses, liquor stores and grocers made sure that customers would not be left needing.Outgoing Managing Director of Pick n Pay, Henry Feris, said it is critically important this time of the year that customers can spend quality time in shopping centres, as the festive season lends itself to relaxation. “In order to address this customer expectation, it becomes crucial that we aim to meet the customers’ demands with quality, service, choice and new innovation that will make the festive season special,” said Feris. Fenni Nanyeni, owner of Three Sisters, said although business was generally good in the northern towns, a short supply of soft drinks from Coca-Cola Namibia Bottling Company (CCNBC) created a few problems. Nanyeni accused the bottling company of poor service and discriminatory distribution. “There is favouritism within Coca-Cola. Since we entered December I have not received stock while some who came after me have had stock delivered. I understand there isn’t much stock, but the little that is there should be divided amongst all of us equally,” said Nanyeni. Last year during the festive season, a number of local businesspeople staged a peaceful demonstration in front of the bottling company, calling for a fair distribution of its products. “Things have not changed from last year. We are still struggling to get soft drinks during the festive season,” Nanyeni said. According to Nanyeni, traffic congestion also made it difficult to run a business during the Christmas period in the North. “The road leading to the Game shopping complex always has a lot of traffic and the town council needs to find alternative routes to alleviate the congestion, as you cannot conduct business if you’re stuck in traffic for hours,” said Nanyeni. The owner of Fresh Bread Bakery, Ben Haupindi, reported that everything went well this festive season as he had enough stock. Haupindi, who sells freshly baked bread and gas at his place of business in Oshakati, said despite high demand, he did not experience any stock shortages. “Gas used to be a problem every year, but this year we did not experience any shortages. Business really did well because we were very prepared,” he said. OSHAKATI MERJA IILEKA

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