You Asked Us…
Why does Tamimi have a monopoly at KAUST for selling groceries and why are their prices so high?
- Tamimi is not the exclusive grocer at KAUST, they do operate the Tamimi Supermarket and the Tamimi Market at Discovery Square. Greens Fruits & Vegetables shop is a grocery store that offers: dried beans, lentils, grains and flours, spices, honey, teas, oils, dried fruits & dates, nuts, savory snacks, sweets & candies, specialty items, a wide variety of produce and more. The shop is located in the Harbor district, near the Harbor Library, and can easily be accessed on foot, bicycle or a free ride on the Harbor Shuttle.
- During the bidding for KAUST supermarket, consideration for two national grocery chains to operate at KAUST was included in feasibility studies conducted by multiple national grocery store chains [bidders] and KAUST. Each study reached the same conclusion. That competing national chains serving the same small market would result in losses for both providers and would affect the business continuity. Following the results of these studies, the only bidder that would commit to operating a supermarket at KAUST was Tamimi.
- Regular studies are conducted by KAUST to ensure that Tamimi pricing of staple goods adhere to government pricing regulations and align with city market prices. Prices of specialty and import items will vary from national chain stores located in nearby cities. A principle reason for the price variance is sales volume. The KAUST Tamimi supermarket caters to a population of approximately 7,000. Compare to just one supermarket in Jeddah that has 100,000+ customers in the surrounding neighborhood. Greater sales volume translates into larger supplier discounts and promotional offers.
- For residents, that need grocery items not currently offered within KAUST, or seeking an alternative, the Transportation department provides free service to the following national grocery chain stores in Jeddah:
- Carrefour-Stars Avenue Mall
- Manual Market-Al-Yasmeen Mall
- Danube-Red Sea Mall
- Hyperpanda -Mall of Arabia
- Hyperpanda -Roshan Mall
- Hyperpanda-Aziz Mall
- Sarawat-Jeddah International Market Mall
Free bus service to additional destinations like Balad, IKEA and Saco World provide residents another opportunity to find and buy desired food and household items.
- Community members may also purchase grocery items such as local, organic and natural products, from vendors at community markets and other events that take place throughout the year at KAUST.
Visit the Bus Services webpage for information on the Harbor Shuttle route, Jeddah bus timings, the seat reservation link and more. View the Retail Outlet webpage for retailer listings including hours and locations.
Do you have a question for Community Life? Email your query to GetEngaged@kaust.edu.sa