Private equity funds acquire stake in Tunisian hard discounter

Mediterrania Capital Partners and Ekuity Capital have acquired a stake in Tunisian hard discounter Aziza. Founded by Groupe Slama in 2014, Aziza has expanded rapidly and currently has around 250 outlets, a total sales area of 70,000m2, and more than 2,000 employees. The financial terms of the transaction have not not disclosed.

Like Turkish hard discounter BİM, which operates more than 700 outlets in Morocco and Egypt, Aziza’s business model appears to draw inspiration from those of German chains Aldi and Lidl, albeit with much smaller stores.

Private label plays a key role in the hard discount model, but Aziza arguably takes this one step further: Groupe Slama is a conglomerate with significant interests in food processing via subsidiary Gias Industries, which manufacturers such brands as Sango fruit juices, Goldina and Laziza spreads, and Chocoping confectionary. It also has a stake in Al Nasseem, a maker of dairy and ice cream products.

Daniel Viñas, partner at Mediterrania Capital Partners, commented: “Aziza has developed a unique concept in the Tunisian market, proving its ability to take advantage of the food retail sector development from a traditional system into a modern distribution network.”