New shopping mall launching next year – pushing South Africa’s growing retail trend

 ·6 Nov 2023

Construction has started on the Mbhashe Mall in Idutya, Eastern Cape, adding to the increasing number of retail centres outside South Africa’s major urban zones.

The development – done by Exemplar, McCormick Property Development (MPD) and entrepreneur Livingstone Nogoduka – started in late October, with contractors starting on bulk earthworks.

“As we wrap up 2023, it is exciting to finally get started on another incredible opportunity in the Eastern Cape,” said CEO of Exemplar, Jason McCormick.

“We believe in the retail possibilities within the province and in Idutywa in particular, as it serves as a regional trading hub for the entire Mbhashe region of the Eastern Cape.”

“We anticipate serving communities up to 60km away, and the development gives us a great opportunity to spread our #ChangeforGood impact across some of the most rural communities in the country.”

The mall will be a single-level, double-anchored, enclosed mall, with the first phase spanning over 19,000 sqm.

Some of the confirmed tenants thus far are some of South Africa’s most recognised brands, including:

  • Shoprite,
  • Shoprite Liquor,
  • Boxer,
  • Boxer Liquor,
  • OBC,
  • Clicks,
  • Capitec,
  • ABSA,
  • Truworths,
  • The Pepkor and the Studio 88 groups.

According to MPG’s website, the mall will open in 11 months and 18 days – which is Thursday, October 24, 2024.

The mall is the 83rd development by MPD, which has an extensive track record of building township and rural malls.

It also highlights Exemplar’s push into the Eastern Cape, with the group already opening Lusiki Plaza, KwaBhaca Mall and Bizana Walk in the province.

Although urban Gauteng is still comfortably the mall capital of South Africa, rural retail is booming across the country.

In 2022, there were several smaller shopping centres (around 10,000 sqm) that opened their doors.

This is despite the retail sector chugging along as consumers feel the pain of the challening economic climate due to high inflation, steep interest rates and the effects of load shedding.

Read: ‘Work from home’ is losing steam in South Africa

Show comments
Subscribe to our daily newsletter