KIU, Western Campus – 85 employees of PEP Stores have been rendered jobless following the closure of the operations of the clothing discount retailer’s operations in Uganda, according to a Daily Monitor report.
According to the report, the closure was accelerated by the pressures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and its accompanying lockdown, imposed by the government to curb the spread of the disease.
However, other factors like the competitiveness of the clothing market had already made business very uncomfortable but it is the major market disruptions brought about by the lockdown, like travel restrictions, that left quitting the market as the only option for PEP.
The largest clothing discount retailer in Africa has been operating 13 retail stores and a distribution centre, which will all be closed entirely at the end of December 2020 but plans to offer a retrenchment package to the company’s employees are on the table.
Many companies, especially those which depend on non-necessity goods, have been hit massively by the pandemic, which apart from being denied customers by the movement restrictions, have also suffered from a huge drop in people’s incomes.
However, there is some hope. The Private Sector Foundation of Uganda (PSFU) in June announced plans to support around 200 enterprises that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic through the COVID-19 Economic Recovery and Resilience Response Program.
Picture credit: PEP