JEFFREYS BAY is poised to become the ultimate shopping destination as, despite the economic downturn, many national franchises are gearing up to enter the market or expand on existing shops.Work on the 1400m² Dis-Chem megastore, which is set to open its doors on December 1, commenced last week in the Fountains Mall. The unabridged faith of businessman Finney Jordaan in the town and especially the future of the Fountains Mall has compelled Jordaan to take the plunge and invest a whopping R19-million into a joint venture with Dis-Chem, one of the biggest names in health care.
Thrilled to announce this new era in shopping for the Kouga, Jordaan says the decision to incorporate three of his four pharmacies into one mega Dis-Chem store was not taken lightly.
“A lot of thought and research went into making this choice,” he says. “Market research involving 2132 locals showed without a doubt this is the way to go.
“People are becoming more discerning, they have to make their rand stretch and we have to keep abreast of new trends.”
Jordaan and his wife, Este, opened up their first pharmacy in 1996 with only one additional staff member; today they employ 55 full time employees and with this new venture managed to create an additional 10 posts.
“The best part is we can reemploy all our existing staff plus create more jobs,” says Jordaan, adding all the alterations in the shop are been done by local contractors as well.
All the staff are currently under going training at various destinations around the country
Jordaan’s fourth shop in Da Gama Road at the Spar Centre will be revamped into a Dis-Chem Express shop.
“One of the advantages of being part of a nationwide franchise is that customers’ details are logged onto a network, meaning they can visit any of the shops and all their info will be on hand.”
Jordaan says the pharmacy at Equinox Mall will stay in operation until January next year.
The store in the mall will also carry many firsts. It will be the only Dis-Chem with a coffee shop, a hearing clinic and skin tanning salon. They will also carry stock from 23 cosmetic houses.
The mall’s marketing manager, Esti Roos, says they are ecstatic with this new development.
“We are constantly looking at improving our tenant mix and this is great.”
She confirmed the mall is in negotiations with furniture shops and more restaurants, clothing stores and would like to establish a garden centre.
Other stores that are apparently gearing up to be revamped in the near future are Clicks in the CBD and Checkers in Da Gama Road.
Meanwhile an unconfirmed rumour has it a well-known bank is also eyeing a spot in the mall.