CFAO, the Paris-listed distributor of automobiles, healthcare products and consumer goods in 34 African countries, will operate the outlets of the five brands under exclusive agreements.
The brands are: Kaporal (fashion brand aimed at 16- to 35-year-olds), La Grande Récré (toys and games company), Bonobo (accessible denim brand), Cache Cache (longstanding women’s fashion brand) and L’Occitane (cosmetics manufacturer).
These five will form part of a “club of brands” initiated by CFAO. According to a company statement, it is a “network of international brands wishing to support the rise of the African middle class”. CFAO plans to eventually have around 20 companies in its “club of brands”.
CFAO is building new shopping malls in eight African countries – Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal. It is expected the French brands will first be introduced into these centres.
According to Xavier Desjobert, chief executive of CFAO’s retail unit, it will give them all “access to a high-growth market”.
CFAO last year also announced a joint venture with Carrefour whereby it will help the French retailer launch in both West and Central Africa.