International firms in Africa’s food retail business-emerging issues and research agenda

Felix Adamu Nandonde, John Kuada

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
202 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to describe the state of the retail sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, to point out the lack of information on some critical issues and to raise some questions about relevant topics for researchers and practitioners in the retail area for the African market. Design/methodology/approach – This paper is comprised of a comprehensive review of the literature and integrates the fragmented body of knowledge on the area of retail internationalisation and food marketing. The gaps in the literature identified here may help to understand the sector better and develop academic research agendas on both the growth of the modern food retail sector and the
agribusiness sector in Africa.
Findings – Four major topics were identified in the urban agri-food retail business in the African continent: large global retailers in Africa’s food sector; the internationalisation of African food retailers; the procurement practices of international retailers; and, the food-buying behaviour of Africa’s middle class.
Originality/value – This research paper relied heavily on grey literature such as newspapers and unpublished masters’ dissertations and PhD theses. With this material as a context, this paper provides guidance as to how scholars can advance the study of retail internationalisation in Africa, not only through further empirical and conceptual research but also by developing usable
prescriptions for agribusiness value-chain actors on the continent.
Keywords Africa, Food, Internationalization, Global large retailers
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Retail & Distribution Management
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)448-464
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Africa
  • Food
  • Internationalization
  • Global large retailers


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