Chinese discounter Miniso set to open in Ghana, its 9th country in Africa

Chinese discount general merchandise retailer Miniso is set to open 10 stores in Ghana over the next three years – its ninth African market. The initial stores will launch in Accra in Q3 2019, with Kumasi and Takoradi key targets for 2020-2021.

Miniso is a discount general merchandise chain with stores in over 80 countries. It was cofounded by Japanese designer Miyake Junya and Chinese entrepreneur Ye Guofu. It is headquartered in Guangzhou, China. The retailer emulates design-led Japanese stores such as Muji, Uni Qlo and Tokyo Hands but at a much cheaper price point – many products are under $2 and most are under $20.

Miniso manufactures and retails products including health and beauty products, sports, and travel products, clothing, textiles and accessories, homewares, tools, toys and games and more. Miniso also holds licenses and rights to manufacture branded products based on characters from Disney, Hello Kitty, Sponge Bob and Marvel Entertainment.

Since the launch of its first store in 2013, the company has opened 3,600 outlets worldwide and an annual turnover in 2018 of $2.5bn. It is currently opening new stores at a rate of 80-100 per month. In Africa, Miniso has outlets in Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, Madagascar, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda. In Nigeria alone the company intends to open 200 outlets over the coming years. Trendtype expects the company to target new store launches in Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon and Tunisia in 2019.

In Africa, Miniso will compete most directly with South African retailers PEP, Edcon and The Crazy Store, none of whom have strong footprints outside Southern Africa. Miniso’s growth trajectory is driven by its franchising model: Miniso looks to recruit potential franchisees who have a high footfall store of 200m² and in return seeks a 40% cut of gross turnover. The company estimates that set up costs, including initial stock, are around $200,000.