I guess our contributors / writers have tuned in to the teaching mode from the past week as we write again about another lesson, what Future Group has learnt from the slump and how it has changed its strategy on small format retailing.
Mr. Biyani has made it clear that Future Market and Consumer Group Ltd will now focus on 6 large formats Pantaloons, Big Bazaar, Food Bazaar, Central Malls, eZone and Home Town. All the smaller standalone formats like Fashion@Big Bazaar, Lee Cooper, Dori, Ethnicity, Celio, Staples and Navras will see their operations merged with one of the 6 large formats. However, this does not mean the end of these small formats, they will continue to be expanded by means of shop-in-shop concept. This is unlikely to dent the bottom-line as the smaller formats can encash upon the footfalls of their larger cousins. Also, incremental costs of establishing these shop-in-shop will be lower compared to that of standalone. The strategy will also hold good for forthcoming specialized store openings.
Mr. Damodar Mall, Executive Director of Future Group said,
After the slowdown, we felt while the smaller formats had potential, opening more standalone stores may not be productive, given the huge investments in setting up the store and in creating a brand preference among consumers. Hence, we’ve decided to focus on growing them through the large formats we have, including Big Bazaar, Food Bazaar, Pantaloon, Central, eZone and Home Town.
You should note that group has shut down some Lee Cooper and Depot stores and employees being absorbed in other operations. The group is all set to add upwards of 3 mn sft in retail space by next June with this new mantra 🙂
Do you think that other large Indian retailers will follow into the footsteps of Mr. Biyani ?