Wholesalers in Mutare are reportedly contracting vendors to sell their goods on the streets, thus bypassing the formal retailers.
A survey conducted by New Zimbabwe on the streets of Mutare established that locally-manufactured goods are significantly cheaper on the streets than in shops.
A vendor who spoke to the publication, identified as Tariro Makanga (27) had this to say:
Every day I get three boxes of cooking oil, three cases of sugar and a cartoon of washing soap.
I sell the stuff and at the end of the day, I remit the principal money and deduct my commission.
I am making a living because people now opt to buy from us than retailers who are charging exorbitant prices.
Another vendor revealed that though they have to constantly evade municipal police, business was booming as she took home RTGS$90 daily.
A shop manager at one of the formal shops told New Zimbabwe that they are now in trouble due to the proliferation of vendors. He said:
We are in trouble as you can see the shop is empty customers are shopping in the pavements. Our management should sit down and re-strategise or else we will be forced to retrench or close shop. Our products are overpriced and manufacturers are not happy with the current turnaround period.
Wholesalers are said to have decided to abandon traditional retailers to deal with vendors because the former are overpricing goods resulting in reduced sales.
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