'Cape Town, South Africa: Woolworths celebrates 75 years On Tuesday, October 31st, Woolworths will celebrate 75 years of trading in the South African retail market. “This is a major milestone for us,” said Simon Susman, CEO of Woolworths. “We’ve come a long way since Max Sonnenberg opened the first Woolworths store in Cape Town 75 years ago on the 31st October in Plein Street, Cape Town, but many of the values that Mr Sonnenberg espoused then, remain true to Woolworths today.” Over the past 75 years, Woolworths, also affectionately known as “Woolies”, has developed into a well-known South African retail brand with its own unique retail format – selling a mixture of food, clothing, homeware and financial services. Best known for enduring quality, Woolworths is also passionate about introducing innovative products that meet customers’ needs for newness, simplicity and convenience. “During the next year we will take many opportunities to reflect on our heritage and the values that are intrinsic to our business,” said Susman. “We will also take time to consider what we need to continue to grow this brand and entrench Woolies position in the hearts and minds of our people, partners and customers.” “Most importantly we will celebrate with two big groups of people, our employees and our suppliers, the true champions of the Woolies brand,” said Susman. “Without the commitment of all these passionate retailers, all our efforts would be in vain. It is to all of them that we owe our success – from our very first sales assistant, Nellie Price, to the many thousands of people who have worked with Woolies since – thank you, all of you.” Birthdays are traditionally a time of giving and, to this end, Woolworths will be celebrating with less fortunate communities, in addition to the R170m of surplus food and clothing Woolworths donates to needy communities each year, and the more than R1m per month we distribute through our MySchool programme. In celebration of Woolworths 75th year, 75 water tanks will be donated by the Woolworths Trust to needy schools identified through the EduPlant programme. “These water tanks will provide much needed water storage for these under-privileged schools, enabling them easy access to water to feed their nutritional gardens. This is a critical component of our efforts to help these learners provide food for themselves and their communities and, where there is excess produce, it also provides a stream of income for the school,” commented Susman. Woolworths has also announced the launch of the Woolworths Chuckles Fund. “We also wanted to do something that would remind us and our customers of the world around us every day,” explained Susman. “Our biggest treat line is chuckles – every store stocks them and our customers love them…so for every packet of chuckles sold in this, our 75th year, we will give an additional 75c to the Chuckles Fund which will support orphaned & vulnerable children,” announced Susman. Woolworths will be encouraging customers to choose chuckles as their treat of choice in the 75th year and, through this, put additional money into the Woolworths Trust, specifically for orphaned and vulnerable children. Ends