Group profile

Lewis Group is a leading retailer of household furniture and electrical appliances through its three trading brands: Lewis, Beares, and Best Home and Electric.

The group has 761 stores across all metropolitan areas and in rural South Africa, as well as a strong presence in neighbouring African countries.

Lewis is the country’s largest furniture chain with 513 stores and is a household name in furniture retailing.

Beares, a well respected brand with a history dating back 80 years, was acquired by the group in 2014 and currently has 125 stores.

Best Home and Electric was established in 2008 and sells home appliances as well as furniture ranges
through 123 stores.

Lewis and Best Home and Electric target customers in the growing middle to lower income markets in the living standards measurement (LSM) 4 to 7 categories. Beares attracts customers in higher LSM markets where the group has traditionally had limited exposure.

Credit is offered to customers across all the brands and the group has a credit customer base of close to 620 000. Credit sales accounted for 65.3% of total sales in the reporting period.

Monarch Insurance, the group’s short-term insurance subsidiary, offers insurance cover to customers purchasing merchandise on credit.

African expansion

Lewis was one of the first South African retailers to expand into Southern African countries from the late 1960s. In 2016 the group acquired a portfolio of 56 stores in Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland which doubled the store presence outside of South Africa to 15%. These stores collectively accounted for 18.5% of group revenue in the current financial year.

Customer commitment

The group is committed to service excellence and offering quality, exclusive merchandise. High levels of repeat sales to existing customers are evidence of service satisfaction, trust and customer loyalty. As part of the commitment to service excellence, Lewis strives to be an integral part of the communities in which it operates. Shoppers are served by staff from their local communities, with stores being located close to the places where Lewis customers live, work,
shop and commute.

Founded in Cape Town in 1934, the Lewis Group has been listed on the JSE Limited since 2004. The group employs 8 215 permanent staff and is a meaningful contributor to job creation and support of the local furniture manufacturing sector.

Further detail on the group’s history is available on the website, http://www.lewisgroup.co.za//corporate-profile/history/