It was something of an understatement to describe Spar’s 2023 as “challenging”, as nonexecutive director Trudi Makhaya did. Six of the group’s directors retired or resigned, including chair Graham O’Connor and CEO Brett Botten; five new directors were appointed, including a new CEO and a COO. Two more nonexecutives are set to join next month.

The company is also selling its Polish business, forcing a R444.2m impairment of goodwill. A new SAP IT system turned out to be an expensive failure, costing R1.7bn in lost sales and R780m in lost profit. That’s before any compensation that might be paid to the independent retailers who lost sales or were forced to use more expensive suppliers...

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