PICK N PAY announced on Thursday the opening of its third Mauritian store in Mont Choisy, in the Grand Baie region, which further expands the retailer’s African footprint.

Africa has become a modern-day mecca for consumer-facing companies in search of higher yields. The Economist Intelligence Unit predicted that by 2030‚ Africa’s top 18 cities could have a combined spending power of $1.3-trillion.

Pick n Pay opened its first Mauritian store in Bagatelle’s Mall of Mauritius and the second in Cascavelle in the final quarter of last year.

The new store is about 3,000m² in size.

According to Pick n Pay’s head of group enterprises for Africa, Dallas Langman, the group’s offering would appeal to the local and expat population.

In October, Mauritius was ranked as the easiest place to do business in Africa on the World Bank’s 2012 Ease of Doing Business index.

Pick n Pay’s strategy into Africa has mainly been through partnering with locals, and the franchise route where local experts own the franchise in their own communities.

However, there are instances — such as stores in Zambia — where the company will develop corporate-owned stores.

In Zimbabwe, Pick n Pay has just converted one TM Supermarket Store into a Pick n Pay store, and will open a second this month. It plans to convert more stores in the TM group, of which Pick n Pay holds 49% of the shares, while the rest are held by Zimbabwean shareholders.

"Our strategic decision to direct Pick n Pay’s expansion and growth beyond the borders of South Africa has proved successful beyond our expectations. To date, we have 100 stores in, among others, Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mauritius and Namibia," Mr Langman said.

Rival Shoprite Holdings’ non-South African supermarket operation spans 16 countries in Africa, with a total of 156 stores.