We shall bounce back, Nakumatt says as Ukay shuts down

Nakumatt's former Chief Executive Officer Atul Shah outside Ukay Centre in Westlands, Nairobi county, during its demolition by agencies in the Nairobi regeneration team, August 10, 2018. /EZEKIEL AMING'A
Nakumatt's former Chief Executive Officer Atul Shah outside Ukay Centre in Westlands, Nairobi county, during its demolition by agencies in the Nairobi regeneration team, August 10, 2018. /EZEKIEL AMING'A

Nakumatt holdings

has

closed down Nakumatt Ukay in Westlands following demolitions of Ukay centre in which it was housed.

Administrator Peter

Kahi

on Friday said they had removed most of the stock within the building

valued at more than Sh60 million.

Efforts to clear the remaining

fixed furniture and fittings are ongoing.

"Nakumatt holdings wishes to officially confirm that the former Nakumatt Ukay has closed its doors. This follows the partial demolition of Ukay centre that has housed the branch for the last 25 years,"

Kahi

said.

He added, "The stocks retrieved from the branch have been transferred to other Nairobi branches including Nakumatt Mega, Nakumatt Prestige, Nakumatt Lavington and Nakumatt Embakasi. As part of our recovery strategy, I wish to encourage our loyal shoppers to visit us at any of these branches and enjoy the Nakumatt hospitality and retail".

Kahi said the retail will

honour

its obligations to all of its suppliers

and related stakeholders as per existing contractual

agreements.

The multi-agency team handling Nairobi's regeneration started demolishing Ukay Centre in Westlands early on Friday morning, about a day after its owners went to court to prevent the destruction.

The retailer, which grew from a mattress shop in a rural town to have branches across Kenya and East Africa, was forced to shut more than a dozen outlets last year as it struggled to repay its suppliers, landlords and other creditors.

Currently, the company has only six branches

in operation after the closure of Nakumatt Ukay.

CBD Chief Julius Wanjau, who is in charge of the operation, said they were not served with the court order that Ukay owners claim to have obtained.

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Earlier on, owner Atul Shah told journalists that the demolition

of Ukay is a setback to its recovery plan.

Shah said the goods in the branch belonged to suppliers whom they owe about Sh25million.

He said the branch also owes furniture suppliers

some Sh125 million.

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