Retailers News South Africa

Clicks reflects on 50 years in the retail business

This August, Clicks celebrates fifty years of trading since launching in Cape Town in 1968. Becoming one of South Africa's foremost health and beauty retailers, Clicks has since expanded to more than 650 stores and over 500 in-store pharmacies across South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland and Lesotho.
Clicks reflects on 50 years in the retail business

Clicks Group market capitalisation on the JSE passed the R50 billion mark in its 50th birthday year and the company was recently included in the FTSE/JSE Top 40 Index for the first time.

Remaining relevant

Explaining how the brand has remained relevant throughout the decades, Clicks chief operating officer Vikesh Ramsunder says it's all about value. “We have always, and will always, stay true to our customer promise of value.”

“We’ve always been a value retailer and have stuck to our strategy of offering great value to customers. Clicks has become synonymous with 3 for 2 promotions, new product launches and a wide range of private label and exclusive products,” he says.

The retail chian's story goes back 50 years to 1968 when retailer Jack Goldin opened the first Clicks store in St. George’s Street, Cape Town. It was Goldin who penned the company slogan ‘You pay less’, which has evolved in recent years to ‘Feel good, pay less.’

The Clicks ClubCard is of South Africa's most popular loyalty programmes, with over 7.5 million active members. In 2017 alone, R320 million was paid to ClubCard members in cashback rewards.

Clicks is also the largest retail pharmacy chain in South Africa, with over 20% share of the retail pharmacy market.

“We recently opened our 500th pharmacy at Park Station, the largest railway station in Africa, which highlights our commitment to making our stores and pharmacy locations even more convenient to customers. Our long-term goal is to expand the chain to 900 stores, with a pharmacy operating in every store,” says Ramsunder.

Milestones along the way

• The Clicks ClubCard loyalty programme launches in 1995 and has been independently rated as South Africa’s leading loyalty programme for the past five years.
• The first Clicks pharmacy opens in 2004 in Cape Town.
• Clicks launches the Helping Hand Trust in 2011 which provides free basic healthcare testing and wellness services to disadvantaged South Africans through Clicks clinics.
• The Clicks Group employee share ownership programme is introduced in 2011 and paid out R1.3 billion to over 5,800 employees in 2018 when the first 50% of the scheme matured.
• In 2016, Clicks introduces online shopping which allows customers to choose in-store or home delivery, with access to over 15,000 products.
• In 2018, Clicks opens its 500th pharmacy, 14 years after opening the country’s first corporate retail pharmacy.

To celebrate its 50th birthday, fifty Clicks customers will each win a free basket of shopping, while store staff will support 50 charitable causes during the birthday month. Sixteen schools will receive R1 million worth of reusable sanitary pads and 34 charitable projects will receive support through donations of toiletries, infrastructure and basic essentials.

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