Category Manager Jobs, Corporate Staffing Jobs,

Title: Category Manager – Stationery / Books,

Location: Nairobi,

Reporting to: Managing Director,

Our client is the largest and most diverse book-seller and distributor in Africa. They seek to hire an experienced, talented and customer focused Stationery/Books Category Manager to lead the evolution and growth of one of our largest categories in a rapidly changing environment and marketplace. As the Stationery/Books Category Manager, you will focus on delivering a world-class customer experience and exceptional sales and margin growth for the sub-categories that you are responsible for as we rapidly expand our selection both locally and from around the world.


  • Own the Stationery/Books category end-to-end across all our channels (wholesale, owned stores, franchised stores, e-commerce) and is responsible for the performance of the category: assortment, financials, merchandising, pricing and consumer experience
  • Lead the category from selection of the suppliers, sourcing of the products, definition and distribution of the assortment, inventory management, along with merchandising and marketing/promotional activities
  • Own the commercial calendar for the stationery/books category in order to maximize each commercial opportunity to grow sales and visibility of TBC
  • Create and develop a data-driven category business plan and strategy for development of the category and lead its execution
  • Build and lead a team to execute on business area or category objectives
  • Coach, drive and inspire team members and provide feedback to enhance skills, knowledge and work performance
  • Define success for the category and engage the team to deliver business results consistent with category strategy
  • Ensure premium merchandising standards across all channels to enhance consumer experience, including product presentation, content, customer reviews and enhancements
  • Evolve and elevate the category’s assortment strategy through in-market expertise and identify assortment gaps and opportunities
  • Optimize the product sourcing mix across manufacturers, distributors and third-party retailers
  • Work with planning and supply chain partners to manage owned inventory in the stationery/books category
  • Own vendor relationships, including negotiating product costs and supplier funding
  • Ensure holistic price competitiveness and adherence
  • Collaborate with marketing and creative teams on category messaging
  • Lead category management projects to optimize ranges and related merchandising
  • Foster trust relationships with vendors to achieve better pricing and quality of services and places appropriate orders to ensure product availability that meets consumer demands
  • Work alongside wholesale and retail teams to translate customer insights into strategies which drive performance
  • Manage P&L and ensures achievement of category financial targets and identify levers to achieve these targets


  • Masters degree in Business, retail or related fields
  • 8-10 years experience in business, retail or related fields in the FMCG sector
  • 5 years non-food category management in an omnichannel retail environment
  • Strong negotiator with proven experience in setting negotiation strategies and conducting negotiations
  • Extremely customer-focused and takes the time to understand the evolution of the market and the needs of the business
  • Deep expertise in inventory Management, Planning, and Merchandising both in physical and digital retail environments
  • Strong analytical skills including the ability to quickly synthesize, distil and draw conclusions on large amounts of disparate data
  • Ability to manage multiple simultaneous projects requiring frequent communication, organization, time management, and problem-solving skills
  • Analytical thinking and the ability to analyse retail insights and break down the components but still be able to see the bigger picture
  • Excellent written, verbal and presentation skills

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