It’s All Systems Go for Black Friday: The Shoprite Group Gears Up for Shopping Event of the Year

Customers can rest assured, there will be no crashing trolleys, apps or e-commerce platforms this Black Friday at the Shoprite Group. The world’s biggest shopping event is around the corner and the Group has all systems ready for action ahead of this retail extravaganza.

The Group continues to explore innovations that are reimagining the future of retail and improving the customer experience. Using powerful software and machine learning, Africa’s largest retailer is further improving its supply chain, deliveries and store layouts. These new technologies together with existing IT systems and processes will give customers a more personalised and frictionless Black Friday shopping experience.

Hightech preparation for in-store shoppers

The retailer has been championing innovations for over four decades and regularly optimise processes to ensure that its IT systems can handle the surge in shopper numbers during big campaigns.

“With hundreds of thousands of kilometres of network cable, over 500 000 pieces of equipment and 30 000 till lanes in our stores, we are always proactive about keeping it all in working order all the time, not just during Black Friday.”

– Richard Page, Head of IT Commercial and Service Operations

Bracing for online shopping

The business has several digital channels, including browsing sites for Shoprite and Checkers, eCommerce websites for LiquorShop and Petshop Science, and the Checkers Sixty60 app. Black Friday leaflets will be published on the Shoprite and Checkers sites so that customers can plan their shopping.

“There’s a lot of focus around system stability and being able to scale the system in line with customer demand. We are ready, our systems are ready and we do not anticipate any issues.”

– Debbie Cunningham, Head of Digital Technologies at the Group

Keeping the lights on

The retailer has installed alternative power solutions to ensure that all stores are operating fully during loadshedding. All Shoprite and Checkers supermarkets have diesel generators. In some locations, the generators are used together with solar power to help cut down on diesel use. Stores also have UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) equipment to keep tills going during power outages.

“We do regular planned maintenance on all our generators. We also do load tests, when there’s no loadshedding, to ensure they are in working order. Maintenance on solar systems is done three to four times per year to ensure we get the maximum amount of electricity from our solar PV installations.”

– Sanjeev Raghubir, Shoprite Group Sustainability Manager

What can customers expect

Checkers was the first retailer to launch Black Friday in South Africa in 2014 and will continue to build on the legacy it started eight years ago by offering deep discounts of up to 50% this Black Friday.

Top selling deals from last year included everything from Omo Auto, Jacobs Instant Coffee and Coca-Cola to Phillips Air Fryers. Customers can look forward to great deals on grocery, toys, top appliance brands, tech, wine and more – both in store and online.

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