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Indian Retail Sector535

Indian Retail Sector535

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Published by neelakanteswar

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Published by: neelakanteswar on Sep 07, 2010
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09/07/2010

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SEPTEMBER 2007
.
 
INDIA SE.
 
31
 
T
hese days I seem to be spendingevery other week in India,resulting in my expanding middle.On a recent busy Friday, at the checkoutdesk o the hotel in Bombay, there weretwo harried BPO/KPO managementtype rangs ahead o me with their  busy looks and ubiquitous notebooksand both o them were coming back thenext week to resume their supervision o their young Indian IT coolies – one on aWednesday and the other on a Tuesday,rom whichever country they were o toor the weekend.Given the “Work is my lie and amily,what amily?” mentality o today’s 30-and 40-somethings, I can only hope theywere heading back home and not to thesun-baked deserts o Dubai where theywere on duty through Saturdays and Sundays!Since I believe in balance (both in the bank and in lie), the wie and I headed toManali and drove up to Leh, truly a tripor the gods. Ater my recent sojournsin Uttaranchal, Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh, I see no dierence betweenthe jords o Norway or the mountainso Switzerland and these ethereal placesin India except the currency notes thatthese countries eciently separate romyou at every mountain pass and chalet!With the terric Major Khanduri atthe helm, Uttaranchal is set to becomethe destination o the uture in mountaintravel. The warmth o the Garhwalisand the smiles o the Ladakhis aremagnicent stress busters. The stunning,even awesome Manali-Leh Road closesin mid-September so I urge everyonewho has the time to justdo it!Anyway, it was onone o these gorgeousdrives that I had a “retailepiphany” o sorts: Iound a mega mall withall the leading brands ina “C” class town out inthe boondocks - a signo the times.
The retailavalanche
The news is out! India is shopping.Or, i you look closely, Indians aregoing to the movies more oten in sexy,glossy, huge malls and shopping, eating,gawking, ogling on the way in and outto the ubiquitous multiplexes which arealways on the nth foor o these malls.The list o the players entering India isa who’s who o retail royalty – Walmart/Bharti, Reliance Fresh & Retail,Birlas, Tatas, Rahejas, RPG, Pyramyd,Pantaloon, Carreour, Landmark, Tesco,Argos et al. It looks like it’s a great timeahead or corporatised, highly ecient,value-driven retail India. So good byeGUM, Hello Macy’s! Adidas is talkingabout launching a retail “university” totrain youngsters to smile better and bemore patient with customers.Reliance is launching electronics megamalls called Reliance Digital, the AdityaBirla group is planning shops called More and discounter king Subhiksha iseyeing king-sized prots with a turnover o Rs 30 billion and up to 1000 stores byend 2007.The “Retail King” o India has just published his autobiography whichis prominently placed at the cashier counters o all the Big Bazaars (both as ametaphor and a marketing masterstroke),while Dubai based Damas has storestargeted at newly-weds. I wager that themost popular words in the lexicon o circa 2020 will be mega, hyper, arcade,multiplex, sale, INOX/IMAX, fagshipand anchor, as most youngsters todaynd salvation in glass palaces bearingthese names on their marquee.But some industry insiders in their distinctly un-mall-like oces are beginning to question the sustainabilityo these malls.
 Where’s the revenue?
Walk into any mall as a lay buyer and see the low-revenue-generating ootall(that is, number o shoppers) in anystore. Many malls are ar behind their 
R A V IMACHIRAJU
 VIEWPOINT
India’sRetail Revolution
   P   H   O   T   O   S  :   L   i   j  e  s   h

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