It’s probably no coincidence that Massmart’s grim profit warning was accompanied by the news that its next CEO will be a Walmart man.

After all, one of the great mysteries of the past decade has been the palpable absence of the US retailer’s influence on the chain it bought in 2010 for $2.5bn. Today, Massmart is worth just 20% of what Walmart paid.

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now