The Shoprite Group of Companies started from small beginnings in 1979 with the purchase of a chain of 8 Cape-based supermarkets for R1 million. In 1983 the Group opened its first branch outside the Western Cape-in Hartswater in the Northern Cape. A year later Shoprite sped up its growth by buying six food stores from Ackermans. In 1986 the Group expanded to the Free State, opening a store in Bloemfontein. Shoprite was listed on the JSE Securities Exchange South Africa with a market capitalisation of R29 million. Two years later Shoprite opened two stores in the former Transvaal province, the first of which is situated in Polokwane (Pietersburg).
In 1990 Shoprite opened in Namibia; in 1991 it acquired the national Checkers chain of supermarkets; in 1997 Shoprite acquired the OK Bazaars Group; in 2000 the Group opened its first supermarkets in Zimbabwe, Uganda Malawi, Lesotho and Egypt; 2002 saw the acquisition of the French-owned Champion supermarket group in Madagascar and Score Supermarkets' Tanzanian operation; in 2004 Shoprite started trading as a wholesale operation in India; in 2005 the Group acquired both Foodworld, with 13 stores, and Computicket, as well as opening the first Shoprite Liquor Shop and it entered Nigeria; and in 2007 Shoprite announced an investment of US$80 million into the Democratic Republic of the Congo.