Informal retailing through home-based micro-enterprises: The role of spaza shops

  • A. A. Ligthelm (2005). Development Southern Africa, 199-214
  • Abstract: The informal trade sector constitutes an important part of the South African economy, with estimated sales of R32 billion in 2002. Its emergence is largely attributed to the divergence between the growth in population, especially the urban population, and employment growth in the formal economy. Growth of informal enterprises, especially in the retail sector, is also thriving on the demand of less affluent households, whose household needs for unsophisticated and affordable products are aptly supplied by the informal sector. The aim of this article is to focus on one of the prominent sub-sectors of informal retailing, namely spaza or tuck shops, defined as small retail businesses which operate from a residential stand or home. Particular attention is paid to the size, role and characteristics of spaza trade in South Africa, which is estimated to account for nearly 3 per cent of South Africa's retail trade. 2005 Development Bank of Southern Africa.
  • Theme: Formal/Informal, Microbusiness profiles
  • Keywords: informal sector, microenterprise, national trade, retailing, trade flow, Africa, Eastern Hemisphere, South Africa, Southern Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, World
  • Reference type: Journal Article
  • Geographic location: South Afica, Africa, Global South
  • Quality:
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