Baywest Mall sees over 150 000 shoppers in first three days
More than 150 000 eager shoppers flocked to the Eastern Cape’s newest super-regional mall, the R1.7 billion Baywest Mall in Port Elizabeth, over its first three days of operation, exceeding the expectations of developers and national tenants alike.
Just 24 months after ground broke on the 90 000 square-metre mall, Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle, declared it officially open last Thursday, saying it was and would be a major boost for the province’s economy.
By the end of business Saturday, just over 156 500 shoppers had flowed through the mall’s eight entrances, with trade still strong on Sunday.
Baywest Mall marketing manager, Samantha Hewitson, said both turnout and trade had exceeded all expectations.
“Unaudited figures indicate that some of our national tenants have broken records for a single day of trading, provincially and, for some, even nationally,” said Hewitson.
“Reports from many of our stores indicate that the opening weekend sales have by far exceeded their expectations, especially given that it is a week before payday for many.”
Hewitson said the public had embraced the mall leading up to the grand opening.
“One could feel the anticipation in the air leading up to last week’s opening. However, these opening numbers have really bowled us over.”
Hewitson said that shoppers could look forward to even more exciting stores opening in the coming months, during the mall’s “opening season”.
“With any development this size, teething problems will arise, but we are dealing with them as soon as they crop up,” she said. “The support from the public has been amazing.”
Baywest Unlock to Win competition
Celebrating among the shoppers on Sunday was NMMU Bachelor of Education student, Kirsten Parker-Nance, who was the lucky winner of the Baywest Unlock to Win competition.
Parker-Nance, 20, had the lucky key which unlocked the giant suitcase containing her R21 000 cash prize and prizes from tenants like Dion Wired, Edgars and Pick n Pay bringing the total prize value to over R50 000. Nine other runners-up also received prizes from the mall’s tenants.
“I’m going to be clever with this and invest the money,” said a beaming Parker-Nance shortly after winning the grand prize.
The mall’s operation signals not only the start of development of the Baywest City project, but also the creation of 2,500 permanent jobs at the various stores which are and will be opening their doors.
Image: Unlock to Win winner, Kirsten Parker-Nance (centre), of Walmer, PE. Kirsten's lucky key unlocked the giant suitcase, winning her R21,000 in cash plus prizes from the likes of Dion Wired, Edgars & Pick n Pay bringing her prize value to over R50,000! Baywest Mall Marketing Manager, Samantha Hewitson, (left) congratulated all the 9 runners-up who also won various prizes.
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