HARARE – Most night clubs and bottle stores in and around Harare have run out of popular beer brands as revellers are now being forced to drink whatever is available.
Mineral water has also been out of stock in most outlets.
At other clubs the prices have doubled or trebled and several promoters have shelved showcases as they fear for the worst loses.
Imported beers have been pegged in US dollars which clubs say is difficult for their clients hence declining business.
The low stocks will affect most clubs as they will struggle to pay their workers and even the rentals. For others that had stocked well in advance, there is still beer in their shelves.
Devine Assignments boss Biggie Chinoperekweyi behind a number of clubs in and out of Harare such as Private Lounge, Red Café and City Sports Bar said the situation has not been favourable and they have been forced to close some small margin bottle stores.
He said they have been forced to cancel a number of high-profile events because of the shortages in supplies and he hopes a solution will be found soon before they close more outlets resulting in job losses.
He said big spenders have adopted the wait and see approach which has affected business.
“Without the product there is no business. We have had to close small margin outlets such as bottle stores because of the situation. Imagine water has been a bigger challenge than beer. “We host a number of events at our venues which we have had to cancel. We could be importing but we do not have free funds and because of the prevailing rates, the prices will be difficult for our clients,” he said.
“We hope there will be a solution soon before we close some outlets because we can’t function in such an environment, so for now we just wait and see,” he added.
Mt Pleasant’s Liquor Boys management said they have also recorded reduced business as the economy bites. They said they have not been affected much in as far as stocks are concerned but they are forced to adjust prices to meet the prevailing rates.
“Things are not as they were before, people are no longer spending as they used to do. We can’t charge in US because people do not have the money so we have to adjust the prices according to the prevailing rates for us to remain in business.
“Business has been affected but we are surviving. In terms of products we have managed to survive because we had stocks. Delta has promised to deliver more stocks starting Monday (today). They have been getting orders around and we think the situation will normalise.
“We have also been allowed to import other products such as water so this is room for business,” manageress Wanisayi “Mahwindo” Mtandwa said.
Avondale’s Chef T BBQ proprietors said getting supplies has been difficult especially with the prevailing foreign currency rates.