Chinese gadget maker’s first SSA store an instant hit in Nairobi

Chinese technology company Xiaomi, best known for its Mi smartphones and laptops, opened a Mi Home store in the Hub mall in Karen last week – its first outlet in sub-Saharan Africa. Apart from smartphones, the outlet, which bears more than a passing resemblance to an Apple Store, sells everything from rice cookers to robotic vacuum cleaners and smart home devices.

Website tech-ish.com noted that the brand had built up a cult-like following among local consumers, reporting that “People showed up in numbers and literally queued to get into the small store. And it wasn’t just queuing for fun or to check out the store – it was queuing to buy.”

Xiaomi is planning to open a second Nairobi store in the Sarit Centre in Westlands, in addition to a service centre in the CBD. It is also considering a third store in Westgate Mall.