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Fashion portals making changes as focus shifts to margins

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The stage is set for the next big fight in the online world as new CEOs take the helm at the top fashion ecommerce companies amid mounting challenges of getting customers to buy clothes and accessories without deep discounting. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Retail sector in Delhi has potential to grow up to three times even though there is tough competition from the online segment. (KNN Bureau)

Delhi need specialised retail shopping areas

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Ecommerce, tech companies biggest lessors of office space

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Ecommerce companies and technology startups outpaced IT/ITeS firms for the first time as the biggest office space taker in the country in the first half of the year. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

India’s largest e-commerce firm, Flipkart, has launched 20 stores in 10 cities to let its customers collect the items they ordered online at their convenience, mimicking similar moves from Amazon.com Inc. (Mint)

Flipkart launches 20 stores across India

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Walmart grows wholesale in India

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Two years after scrapping plans to open retail outlets across the world's second-biggest consumer market, Wal-Mart is recommitting to India as a wholesaler. In August, Wal-Mart will open its first new Best Price Modern Wholesale store in India since 2012 as part of a plan to expand from 20 stores to 70 within five years, company executives say. (Los Angeles Times)

 
 
 

Customers from tier-3 and tier-4 towns and beyond are growing aspirational and on their shopping lists are products like microwave ovens, dishwashers and high-tech smart phones. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

Rural Ecommerce in India

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Online retailers moving offline: will it work?

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In the past few years, a slew of pure-play e-tailing companies, including Lenskart, Healthkart, Fabfurnish and Caratlane, among others, have already or are in the process of opening physical stores. Will this Online to Offline (O2O) model be an important game-changer for the future of retailing in India? (Indiaretailing.com)

 
 
 

Ultimately exceptional levels of service happens out of a delivery boy/girl’s personal willingness to go beyond the call of duty. (The Hindu-Businessline)

The tail end of retail

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An Uphill Climb

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There are no shortcuts for mass-segment brands looking to go premium. Here are a few handy rules of thumb. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Spanish fashion brand Zara has become the fastest brand to cross the $100-million sales mark, five years after it opened its first shop here. (The Economic Times)

Zara fastest to US$100 mn mark in India

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Retailers Lobby Against 100 Per Cent FDI In Ecommerce

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Retailers fear that if e-commerce companies are allowed better access to foreign capital, the level playing field between two types of consumer services will be disturbed. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

A delectable combination of rising disposable incomes, changing lifestyles and a young population’s growing penchant for indulgence has transformed India into one of the world’s fastest growing chocolate markets. (Quartz India)

India one of the fastest growing chocolate markets

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Caught In The Big Sale

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Sure, eTailing is growing by leaps and bounds. But eTailers are booking more losses than profits. Deep discounts and returns are a downward spiral they can’t pull out of. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

After sudden market share gains by online players, strategies of several traditional retailers now revolve around omni-channel retail. Within a year of its launch, sales of Trendin have equalled those of 30 branded stores, or close to 1% of Madura’s turnover. (The Economic Times)

It's E-commerce that's Trendin at Madura

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The lesser-known Wipro sibling

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Living in the shadows of the IT business, Wipro's consumer care enterprise often goes unnoticed. Yet, Wipro Consumer Care & Lighting is a globe-trotting behemoth in its own right, within striking distance of becoming a billion-dollar business. (Forbes India)

 
 
 

The country's food regulator plans to soon put the onus on retailers to check for product approvals and could hold them responsible if they are found selling items that have not been approved by it.. (The Economic Times)

FSSAI can hold retailers responsible

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Tata Group's new hybrid online retail venture

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The Tata Group will launch the country's first hybrid online retailing venture, a combination of a portal that will list brands and handle payment transactions and brick-andmortar stores that will set prices, deliver products and provide customer support. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Fashion and lifestyle e-tailer Myntra is understood to have seen a drop in sales after going app-only last month, say market watchers. However, the etailer has no immediate plans to revive the website. (Financial Express)

Myntra sales may have fallen after going app-only

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BigBasket, LocalBanya expect private labels to rise up to 50% through staples and FMCG

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Private labels in daily household, personal care and food products are soon expected to drive nearly half the sales for online grocers, as they aggressively expand their portfolio for higher margins. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Globally, the fashion major GAP is overhauling the way it manages its brand. What is its story in India? (Business Standard)

GAP's new republic

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Cracking the local marketing code

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Local services can help e-commerce players trim costs and improve profit margins but execution is a challenge. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Snapdeal is starting a two week advertising blitz for a home decor sale and has asked vendors for higher margins to fund the ad campaigns. (The Economic Times)

Snapdeal seeks more margins from vendors for sale

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Striking the right chord

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In a highly unorganised market, Tanishq looks to demonstrate the difference standardisation can bring about. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

In a belated attempt to salvage its reputation, Swiss FMCG major Nestle on Friday decided to recall its Maggi instant noodles from retail shelves in the Indian market. (Financial Express)

Nestle buckles, pulls Maggi noodles from the market

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Amit Agarwal Leads Amazon India As Online Retail Is Taking Off

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Amit Agarwal, managing director of Amazon India, appears sartorially to mimic his boss, Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos. The two men also are diminutive in build and brisk in manner. Agarwal sounds like Bezos when he says that in Internet and online retail time, India is still on Day One. (Forbes Asia)

 
 
 

Puma, which made its India debut in 2006, said it posted sales of Rs 766.75 crore in the 2014 calendar year, inching closer to companies such as Adidas and Nike that entered the country earlier. (The Economic Times )

Puma catching up to leaders despite its late entry into India

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Bansals troll each other on Twitter on tech talent

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Taking a dig at each other on social media seems to be the norm for new-age entrepreneurs. A few days after Housing.com CEO Rahul Yadav took on founders of Zomato and Olacabs, it is Flipkart’s Sachin Bansal turn to take on rival Snapdeal on Twitter. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Grocery e-tailing -- once not an in-favour category with Indian e-tailers -- is gunning for growth with startups and existing players eyeing an online shot. For some though, it's an exploration of the genesis of what really matters in retail. (Indiaretailing.com)

Hyperlocal: The inclusive retail model

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100,000 Chinese sellers to join Paytm network from August

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Paytm is set to allow 100,000 sellers from Chinese etailer Alibaba's online shopping portal AliExpress to start retailing on its platform in India from August, a senior executive at the mobile commerce company said. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Neighbourhood kirana stores know their customers like none other. Giant retailers have leant that now, and have realised that partnering with them is their best bet. (Businessworld)

Lucrative liaisons

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Airconditioner manufacturers focus on institutional sales

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AC makers are focussing on institutional sales to make up for slowing retail growth. Industry players assume the growth of air-conditioning in the B2B segment would be 25-30%, compared with single-digit growth in the retail sector. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Myntra.com, India's largest online fashion retailer, has seen a 10% drop in sales since it shut its website and turned a mobile app-only etailer last week. The company, owned by Flipkart, had factored in such a decline and hoped to return to the level of sales prior to the move in the coming weeks. (The Economic TImes)

Myntra sales dip 10% in app-only mode, rivals to play safe for now

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Amazon, Snapdeal won't follow Flipkart to app-only format

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Flipkart-Myntra, the country's largest e-commerce player, maybe busy moving to an app-only format, but its closest rivals Snapdeal and Amazon say they have no plans to shut down their websites and focus only on mobile. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

The future of fashion shopping in India appears all about about m-commerce. Top fashion retailer Myntra - which was acquired by India's biggest e-tailer Flipkart in May 2014 - on Monday said it will go mobile only beginning Friday. (WWD)

Myntra to Go Mobile Only

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The more the merrier

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In its latest campaign, Amazon India attempts to discard its 'metro brand' image and woo the mass buyer. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Amazon launches service that will allow third-party merchants to sell ethnic apparel, shoes, yoga books and other products to customers in US, UK. (MINT)

Amazon India’s third-party sellers go global

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Lack of FDI, threat of e-commerce lead to consolidation in retail space

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At a time when consumer demand has not exactly been upbeat, the two back-to-back deals among the biggest offline retailers over the last two days signals that more mergers and acquisitions could be in the offing. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

The Indian e-commerce space is still at a very nascent stage with significant potential for innovation and growth. With customer acquisition done, Indian ecommerce players are levying additional charges with eye on profitability. (Financial Express )

Customer base in place, e-tailers move to improve margins

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Coca-Cola sponsors rival PepsiCo’s products

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In an unprecedented move, beverage maker Coca-Cola is sponsoring Reliance Retail's ongoing five-day 'Big Jackpot' sale across its 600-plus food and grocery stores and has ended up promoting rival PepsiCo's products. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Danish fashion company Bestseller will soon bring in its premium brand Selected to expand its India portfolio to four brands. (The Economic Times)

Bestseller to add Selected to its brand portfolio in India

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Retailers spend on technology to counter ecommerce

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Brick-and-mortar retailers are beginning to spend more on technology and omni-channel strategies to combat the growing threat from ecommerce, a boon for tech firms who had seen revenue growth from retail decelerate in the last few years. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Acquisition seems to be the trend among India’s online consumer businesses. From Flipkart’s acquisition of Myntra to Snapdeal’s buyout of Exclusively.com, there is news of acquisition coming in from all quarters. (IMAGES Retail)

How acquisitions are churning growth in ecommerce

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Book retailers revamping strategies to take on online stores

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Brick-and-mortar book stores are rethinking their strategy to take on competition from online market places, which lure book lovers with attractive discounts. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

The market for used goods is growing, with new types of products being transacted online. Person-to-person sales are on the rise as more individuals understand and transact with ease online. (The New Indian Express)

Don't Resell Yourself Short

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Future Group's ambitious reboot

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Future Group's Kishore Biyani wants to get to Rs 100,000 crore in sales by 2020. He's chalked out an ambitious push, one that will change the face of his company. (Forbes India)

 
 
 

The company runs Jawed Habib Academy and salon and parlour brands Bevels, Hair Yoga, Jawed Habib Hair & Beauty and Hair Xpresso. (The Economic Times)

Jawed Habib hair cosmetics range, two new salon brands

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Right on Target

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Target, the $73-billion retailer, becomes the first global corporation to take a major dive into working with Indian start-ups. It has worked with 10 already in just over a year. (Business World)

 
 
 

The focus for India's ecommerce sector needs to shift from rapid expansion and capturing market share to building sustainable businesses. (Quartz India)

Are India’s e-commerce valuations a bubble?

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10 sharply focussed ecommerce players in India

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Looking into the future: identifying India's online successes. (Forbes India )

 
 
 

The rise of vertical players and aggregators points to a change in the largely horizontal game in the Indian online retail industry. (Forbes India)

Why focus is the name of the ecommerce game

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E-commerce to See More M&As in Coming Days

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The turbocharged e-commerce in India may be staring at its second round of consolidation with heightened Mergers & Acquisition (M&A) activity in this space. According to experts, the trend of M&A is set to grow by leaps and bounds. (The New Indian Express)

 
 
 

Reliance Industries (RIL) has sought shareholders' approval to make major forays into the online retail space to cash in on the boom in the country's e-commerce market that is expected to grow four-fold to almost $70 billion by 2019. (The Economic Times)

RIL set for big e-commerce foray to support Reliance Jio

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Online grocers target the taste buds

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Online grocers such as Meragrocer.com, BigBasket.com and LocalBanya.com are showcasing food recipes and blogs on their websites and selling all-in-one, do-it-yourself kits to engage the customer. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

There are over 120 million people over the age of 60 in India. That is more than the entire population of most of the countries in the world. (The Economic Times)

Online retailers step in to cater to special needs of the elderly

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Looking for malls that think like brands

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As malls jostle with each other for the same audience, brands either have to jump ship or stay put. A mall with a clear target audience wins their vote. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

India's North-Eastern states are fast emerging as the drivers of growth for some leading e-commerce companies, which claim double-digit growth in the market after having overcome last-mile delivery challenges. (The Economic Times)

North-eastern states growing markets for India's e-commerce players

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Xiaomi may follow Amazon model for its online portal in India

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Xiaomi will likely set up a marketplace platform and bring on board third-party retailers to sell the phones on its portal Mi.com. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

In search of the next sales pitch, some of Madura Fashion and Lifestyle's (part of Aditya Birla Nuvo) apparel brands are turning to customisation. (Business Standard)

Van Heusen's bespoke pitch

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Discount and deal sites helping e-commerce

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As online shopping grows in India, deal sites that offer cash-back and discount coupons have emerged, helping retailers to add customers and widen the market. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Trent Hypermarket — the equally owned joint venture between the Tata Group and UK's Tesco — plans to invest Rs 250 crore as the only Indian multibrand retailer with foreign investment aims to open more stores. (The Economic Times)

Tata-Tesco JV plans Rs 250 crore investment to open more stores

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Man in the mirror

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The market for male grooming products is Rs. 4,300 crore and growing as Indian men today are increasingly conscious about their appearance. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Paytm, which began as a mobile recharge and utility bill payment service in late 2010, has morphed into a fullblown ecommerce marketplace similar to Amazon and Flipkart, only focused on mobile right from the start. (The Economic Times)

How Paytm morphed into an e-tail marketplace

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RIL's New Business Pangs

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While the telecom and retail businesses hold promise, many of the group’s businesses are struggling.. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Being Human, which currently has more than 500 points of sale, appears to have instilled the confidence in Mandhana's promoters to forge out on their own in apparel retail in India, which is not only crowded but also unorganised to a large extent. (Business Standard)

More than Being Human

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More niche acquisitions likely in e-commerce sector, say analysts

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In a bid to strengthen their presence in the e-commerce sector, large players such as Amazon, Snapdeal and Flipkart are likely to look at acquiring companies with niche, differential capabilities, say industry analysts. (Business Today)

 
 
 

Despite an online shopping frenzy in the country and large investors stepping in to fund several online retailers, most e-commerce players are yet to turn their click-and-buy model into big businesses as the big ones steal the show. (The Economic Times)

Big e-tailers like Flipkart, Snapdeal getting richer; Zovi, Yepme yet to touch Rs 100 cr in sales

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eBay lags behind Amazon and Flipkart in commission revenues

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eBay India, one of the earliest online marketplaces in the country, has slipped behind both Flipkart and Amazon on revenues from seller commissions as its two rivals along with Snapdeal have been aggressively pushing sales with big discounting events and high-decibel marketing. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

In less than a year, 22 million have used Paytm, generating business worth Rs. 3,500 crore. This is the brave new world of mobile wallets, where hard cash and payment cards are passé. (The Hindu Businessline)

Money talks… from a mobile phone

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Global brands change partners for more reach in India

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A host of popular brands, including Ferrari, Bang & Olufsen, Montblanc, Etro, Brioni and Bulgari are revisiting their India business plans by tweaking one of the most important factors - the local partner. Reasons differ. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Consider the numbers. In three years of operations (2012-2014), Jabong and Myntra's combined top line has hit Rs 1,000 crore for the year ended March 2014. Growth has been more than blistering. (The Economic Times)

Jabong, Myntra signal revolution in fashion e-tailing

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Burger King eyes a big slice of the Indian market

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A late entrant in the crowded marketplace, Burger King, the international burger chain, has adapted its offering to suit Indian taste buds. But will that be enough? (Forbes India)

 
 
 

The founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba and China’s richest man, Jack Ma, is in India after apparently being swayed by the persuasive powers of prime minister Narendra Modi to come and do business in the subcontinent. (Quartz India)

Alibaba’s Jack Ma needs India

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A Future for Nilgiris

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In a way, Biyani would relate to Nilgiris. He was an apparel manufacturer who made it big in retail. The Nilgiris-founder, Muthuswami Mudaliar, was a milk supplier who went on to set up one of India's earliest modern retail chains. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Retailers lament that their sales have dropped by more than 35-40 per cent during the past three months as online market firms went on a marketing blitz. (Hindu Businessline)

Booming e-tail sounds death knell for electronics retailers

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A Degree of Style

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UCLA and Harvard are selling branded apparel in India. Soon, the University of Oxford will, too. What’s the draw? (Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Multinational retailer Wal-Mart on Thursday refuted the allegations made by Cobrapost.com of foreign direct investment violation in India and insisted that it regularly conducts membership audit internally to keep a tight vigil and continuously improve strict compliance norms. (Hindustan Times)

Wal-Mart denies violating FDI norms

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Looking Beyond Tobacco

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Unlisted major DS Group is eyeing new growth drivers in the FMCG space to dwarf its core tobacco and mouth freshener businesses. (Outlook Business)

 
 
 

In the festive season frenzy of online shopping, the big players have elbowed out the small ones, in more ways than one. (Business Today)

Big is Beautiful

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Brick-and-mortar retailers partnering E-commerce

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Several brick-and-mortar retailers are forging exclusive partnerships with e-commerce marketplaces including Amazon, Flipkart and Snapdeal to target the growing base of net-savvy consumers, digressing from their earlier strategy of considering online players as rivals over deep discounting. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Wipro's consumer care and lighting business could end this fiscal year with $1 billion (Rs 6,000 crore) in revenue, as the company expects the Modi-led government's promised reforms to lead to a better second-half of the year for the company. (The Economic Times)

Wipro Consumer Care & Lighting sees a billion-dollar revenue

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Starbucks outshines rivals in first full year in India

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Starbucks, the world's largest coffee retailer, posted nearly three times more per-store sales than established rivals in India in its first full year of operations in the country. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

E-tailers in India have been racing ahead, but the hunt for buyers has burned Rs 1,000 crore hole in their books, according to their year-end filings with the Registrar of Companies. (The Economic Times)

E-tailers grow, but burn Rs 1,000 crore hole

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Clothing well-to-do India

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From a swadeshi mill to global denim-maker, Arvind has constantly reinvented itself. Its next big opportunity is the country’s high-earning millennials who love to dress in big brands. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

E-tailers such as Amazon, Flipkart and Snapdeal, are spending a fortune on television advertising. This is a throwback to 1999-2000 when dotcoms had raised a lot of money from venture capitalists and were spending heavily on advertising. (Business Today )

Jostling for Eyeballs

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Biyani's Brand Factory unfazed by online sales

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Discount chain to expand to the east and west, continue with third-party brands. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Flipkart, which has raised nearly $1.8 billion from investors since starting out in 2007, including $1.2 billion this year, is looking to aggressively push sales of high-value large appliances such as TVs, refrigerators and air-conditioners. (MINT)

Flipkart to buy into Jeeves in home appliances push

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Preparing for the Big Sale

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With the festive season underway, retailers in the online and the offline world need to prepare well to offer the best deals to consumers and earn trust. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The world's largest online store Amazon and India's largest listed retailer Future Group have signed a deal to jointly sell goods over the Internet amid growing friction between online and offline retailers over heavy discounting. (Quartz India)

Amazon, Future Group Team Up to Sell to India

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A Mall Called Lulu

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Parimala S. Rao visits a sprawling mall in Kerala to come up with the verdict that brick-and-mortar retail is alive and kicking. (Catalyst - The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

India’s shopping websites including Flipkart, Snapdeal and Amazon are fighting for the massive bump in sales in the festive season surrounding Diwali. (Quartz India)

Shopping websites in intense competition this week

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Online Sellers, Shops Slug it Out With Discounts

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As Diwali approaches, brick-and-mortar retailers are scrambling to compete with online websites offering hefty discounts to woo shoppers. (New Indian Express)

 
 
 

In the past two months alone, at least six top executives have quit leading PE firms, citing reasons such as starting their own funds, a lack of performance by the existing funds, and entering the e-commerce space, which has recently witnessed a lot of action. (Business Standard)

Private equity-venture capital witnesses churning at top

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Western luxury fashion set on cracking Indian market

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Although international luxury brands have opened flagship stores all over developing Asia, they have hardly touched the Indian market. This may be about to change. (Nikkei Asia Review)

 
 
 

Two big deals in July changed the landscape for the nation's online retail industry, while also offering more business to providers of support services ranging from website development and payment services to logistics. (The Economic Times)

Big E-commerce deals stir up sector, support services

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Will Future's gigantic food park in Bangalore help farmers?

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The food processing business is set to boom in India and Future Group is ready to cash in on it. How will the benefits flow to the farmers and the consumers? (Scroll.in)

 
 
 

Omni-channel is not just a buzzword; reaching out to consumers through all possible shopping points is becoming imperative. (Business Standard)

Best of both worlds

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Reliance exiting furniture business

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At a time when Swedish retailer Ikea is making big plans to enter India, the country’s largest retailer Reliance Retail is winding up its furniture format under Reliance Living. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Cab booking service TaxForSure, which recently raised $35 million in funding, has cut rates sharply, joining a fare battle with rivals Olacabs and Uber to grab a bigger share of a rapidly growing market. (Mint)

TaxiForSure joins fare war as competition intensifies

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In Still Waters

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Eureka Forbes will find it tough to retain market share in its core water purifier business as competition intensifies. (Business Today)

 
 
 

Indian private equity (PE) investors are gearing up to participate in the e-commerce growth story. In recent past, back-end logistic players have been on radar of PE players. India's e-commerce market, which is expected to reach $20 billion by 2020, has seen the presence of five-six large organised specialised logistics players. (Business Standard)

Logistics players ride e-com bandwagon to raise money

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The Foreign 'Curry' Challenge In India

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Commencing a new restaurant business in India usually comes with a lot of challenges. But these are compouned when you replicate a foreign brand's model in India. (Franchise India/ Retailer)

 
 
 

RBI has said Uber and other companies that offer app-based purchases cannot allow customers to pay with their credit cards without a two-step authentication process. (MINT)

Uber may have to tweak payment model in India

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The Cooked-Up Story

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Markets overseas are ravenous for ready-to-eat chhole, dal makhni and other desi food. Indian kitchens still prefer home-cooked meals over convenience, but will that change soon? (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Gap Inc., which sells brands such as Banana Republic, Old Navy and Piperlime, has signed a franchise agreement with Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd, a unit of Arvind Ltd to enter India. (MINT)

Gap inks franchise agreement with Arvind Lifestyle Brands

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Combo offers for e-devotion

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E-commerce sites in the religious segment launch value-added services to rake in the moolah. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Arvind Group is hoping to achieve sales of Rs1,000 crore through its online business over the next three years, says executive director Kulin Lalbhai. (MINT)

Arvind to launch online business

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A Double Topping for Growth

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Meats and flavoured yoghurt are the new additions in the portfolio of Graviss Foods, the Indian franchise of Baskin Robbins, as it wants to tap into the quick service restaurant and specialty organised retail businesses according to Sanjay Coutinho, CEO.. (Outlook Business)

 
 
 

Partnering with brands to be their exclusive sales partner seems to be the flavour of the season for e-commerce companies. (The Economic Times)

Exclusive alliances between brands and e-tailers

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Meru, TaxiForSure Plan Overseas Drive

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Meru Cabs, India’s largest taxi fleet operator, plans to start services outside India by the next financial year and is evaluating entering countries such as Malaysia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. (MINT)

 
 
 

Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, is shaking up the Indian market and re-writing many of its ‘inviolable’ rules. (The Hindu Businessline )

Amazon; Package Deal

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Mall vacancies rise

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The retail real estate segment saw a significant rise in vacancies in April-June 2014 over the January-March levels as supply increased and tenants exited under performing centres. (DNA)

 
 
 

Fashionara.com has raised $7-8 million (around Rs.42-48 crore) from its existing investors Helion Venture Partners and Lightspeed Venture Partners and plans to increase its sales by expanding into new cities and increasing its product range. (MINT)

Fashionara plans to triple sales

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Do PE funds make bad chefs?

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Quick Service Restaurants (QSRs) are not an easy investment sector as private equity investors are discovering in India. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Carrefour, since its entry into India in 2010, was not able to find a partner to expand its business beyond five stores, and has decided to exit the market. However, experts say that too much shouldn't be read into the exit. (Business Today)

Carrefour exits India

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Doing more with less

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Here's how e-commerce players in India are shoring up revenue per visit to stay ahead in the race. (The Strategist - Business Standard)

 
 
 

Global e-tailing behemoth Amazon and N R Narayana Murthy's family office Catamaran Ventures have floated a joint venture to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) join the online bandwagon, taking advantage of a burgeoning number of online shoppers. (The Times of India)

Catamaran, Amazon JV

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Thinking on their feet

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Footwear brands Liberty and Bata lace up for a fresh round of sales battles to win over customers, as Liberty focusses on young customers and on online retail. (The Hindu BusinessLine)

 
 
 

Cab services provider Uber announced the launch of its low-cost cab brand UberX in Bangalore, New Delhi and Hyderabad to directly compete with local rivals such as Meru Cabs, Ola Cabs and others . (MINT)

Uber launches cheaper brand UberX

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Wipro in tiger economies

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Tech tycoon and Wipro chairman Azim Premji is a hidden dragon springing out an impressive fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) story in Asia's new tiger economies, knocking close on the heels of global powerhouses Unilever and Proctor & Gamble. (The Times of India)

 
 
 

Brands are increasingly leveraging themes based on a social cause, in a bid to break the clutter and ‘connect’ with the target audience.. (Retailer)

Branding with a cause

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Retailers still see red

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Competition from kirana stores, low margins and property & supply chain issues delay break-even in food & grocery chains. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Armed with innovative products and brand extensions in niche adventure and outdoors categories, Harkirat Singh wants consumers to see Woodland in a new light. (Outlook Business)

The Big Kick-Off

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Beyond the Hinterland

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Jyothy Laboratories is that rare company that grew up in the villages and is now ready to take on FMCG biggies in their urban strongholds. (The Hindu BusinessLine)

 
 
 

In another fillip for onlinefashion retail in India, FashionandYou has raised $10 million in funding, according to the company. (Women's Wear Daily - WWD)

Another Investment in Fashion E-tail in India

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India: landslide election heralds optimistic business climate

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The unprecedented victory by Narendra Modi in the world’s biggest democratic elections in India has created what can only be described as a wave of optimism, with many hoping that the country’s economic and business climate will now take a similarly dramatic turn for the better. (International Bar Association)

 
 
 

Many organised furniture e-retailers in India have followed the success story of IKEA keenly, borrowing and tweaking some of its strategies and applying them in their own ventures to drive scale. (Business Standard)

The Ikea Way

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Reliance Retail to go online

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Almost eight years after its launch, Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Retail is ready to launch a multi-channel retail operation, which would integrate its physical stores with an e-commerce portal. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Flipkart, India's largest e-retailer, has acquired online fashion retailer Myntra in a move that is likely to help the two domestic e-retailers face international competition better. (DNA)

Flipkart buys Myntra

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Retailers hope new govt will reverse anti-FDI stand

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Indian retailers are hopeful that the new BJP-led Government will do a volte face on its decision to oppose foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail, but the current policy itself is still flawed. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Van Heusen's renewed focus on womenswear has led to it contributing eight-nine per cent of its revenue (latest financial year), higher than the five per cent that womenswear returns for Madura Fashion and Lifestyle, on an average. (Business Standard)

Van Heusen Woman steps up

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Food chains learn fast

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While quick service restaurants (QSRs) had entered the food scene with Indianised menus, the market has also had a lot of products withdrawn since then. After the initial success, is it now a case of more misses than hits in new menu-items for these QSRs? (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The DS Group, best known for its tobacco-based products, is aggressively diversifying into other segments in a bid to reposition itself. (Forbes India)

Can the Tobacco-based DS Group Diversify Like ITC Did?

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Seminar on Fashion and Retail Industry Held by NITRA

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The seminar organised by NITRA was specifically focussed on students of textile and fashion colleges pursuing UG and PG level programs. (Textiles Update)

 
 
 

Many young office-going couples, especially those hard-pressed for time, find it very convenient to order from online grocery retailers because of the hassle-free shopping experience they provide. (The Economic Times)

Online grocery stores gaining popularity in India

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Nilgiri's to boost Future grocery plans

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Kishore Biyani has the south India-based supermarket brand, Nilgiri's in the cross hairs, with the brand is expected to boost his growth prospects in the food and grocery segment. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

When it comes to retail trade, there seems to be room for negotiation in BJP’s 2014 manifesto. (The Hindu Businessline)

Will BJP soften its stand on multi-brand retail?

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All That Fizz In Store

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Retail consultants and shopper marketing experts share their take on the retail trends in the Indian beverages market and where it's headed. (Point of Purchase Online Network)

 
 
 

After starting delivery services to Indian patrons through its global site, American lifestyle clothing retailer Gap is now inching closer to them by partnering with ecommerce portal Myntra. (Fashionunited)

Gap and Myntra may partner for e-commerce biz in India

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Chasing profits, Future Group shut 40% of Food Bazaar stores in 2013

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Last year, Kishore Biyani’s Future Group closed about 40% of its food and grocery chain of Food Bazaar stores that were not performing well. (Financial Express)

 
 
 

As demand for branded fruits grows in India, corporate groups are diving into the business. After Mahindras, Tatas have entered the space. (DNA)

Corporates spot juicy prospects in branded fruits

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Himatsingka Seide: Spinning a Success Story

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Dinesh Kumar Himatsingka and son Shrikant's focus on design and technology has ensured their company remains on a fast growth trajectory. (Forbes India)

 
 
 

Airport retailing is a popular concept globally but is still in its infancy in India. However, it appears to be ready for an impressive take off, with the renovation of most major airports is underway with large dedicated areas for retail stores. (Business Today)

Flying Visits Welcome

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Flying off the shelves

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The tills are ringing loud and clear at airport outlets, raking in more than shops in the city. With 61.42 million passengers travelling by air in 2013 alone, there is an ever-burgeoning market to tap. One that apparently allows some brands to earn almost eight to nine times of what they earn at malls or high-street outlets. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

While they are not present in this country, some of the largest US-based retailers — JC Penney, Nordstrom, Macy’s, Ann Taylor — are shipping to India or selling their products here through their e-commerce portals, to test the waters. (Business Standard)

US retailers go online to net Indians

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Half of global fashion brands in India through distribution pacts

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The logic for opting for the franchise or distribution arranegement route is to gain control in terms of the product, price and partly the retail experience, according to a report by Third Eyesight. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

A recent report pegs the size of the fake luxury products market in India at Rs 2,500-3,000 crores. (Business Standard)

Buyers' love for discounted luxury products spawns fakes online

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Two Indian States Bar Foreign Supermarkets

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In India, two newly elected state governments have rolled back decisions to allow the entry of foreign supermarkets. (Voice of America)

 
 
 

Brands in the premium segment of the ice cream and frozen desserts market in India are growing. (Business Today/Yahoo Finance)

Always Room for More

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Police attach brand owned by NSEL borrower

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The economic offences wing of the city police on Friday attached a brand belonging to P D Agro, in the National Spot Exchange (NSEL) payment default case. P D Agro owes Rs 637 crore. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

It’s been close to two decades now but Levi Strauss India can’t seem to get the right fit. The apparel maker is watching its bottom line and is letting go of stores and vendors, in a big overhaul over the last 18 months. (Financial Express)

Levi India tapers vendor base

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Rajasthan bans FDI in retail

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The Indian state of Rajasthan has barred foreign direct investment in supermarkets, an ominous sign for global retailers who covet India's vast but fragmented retail sector if the country's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) comes to power nationally in upcoming elections. (Reuters)

 
 
 

Oak Lawn Marketing, a subsidiary of Japanese telecom company NTT DoCoMo, is set to enter India’s burgeoning virtual retailing space through a tie-up with TVC Skyshop, which operates in the same segment. (The Hindu Businessline)

Soon, Skyshop is a NTT DoCoMo’s arm

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Last mile advantage

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With increasing competition in e-commerce space, delivery has become an essential factor after price and assortment. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Retail at airports is an exciting segment for the industry, which is showing good traction in India as more and more travellers indulge in shopping. The new T2 terminal in Mumbai alone is expected to add 15% to existing sales. (Financial Express)

Flying off the shelves

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Is too much discount selling the retail sector short?

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Retailers and mall owners are throwing open malls at eight in the morning and doling out offers and discounts to boost slackening sales. But experts believe too much discount is detrimental to the sector. (The Hindu - Businessline)

 
 
 

The hype over e-retail hides the reality of mounting losses, making it look like Bubble 2.0. (Financial Chronicle)

Losers@Retail

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8 things the new e-tailer must watch out for!

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The e-commerce market is growing fast but there is competition from the big league in the space. Here are a few tips you should consider while taking the plunge. (Moneycontrol.com)

 
 
 

The new AAP-led Delhi government has decided not to allow foreign investment in retail in the capital. New Delhi accounts for a fairly large chunk of the organised retail market in the country and would have been an attractive catchment for any retailer. (Financial Express)

Delhi won’t have FDI in retail as AAP reverses Congress government decision

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Zara's fast fashion finds its shopaholics

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Zara in India and the joint venture between Inditex and Tata-run Trent, has made profits in the second year of operations and has been profitable since then. But Zara will have to work to maintain its dream run, now that many international brands are set to enter India. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Retail experts say, while the upper middle class, that account for at least 40 per cent of all spending, will step up consumption in the next one year, the rest will choose to lie low for a while. But for 2014 there is currently a pipeline of mall supply of 14 million square feet. (Financial Chronicle)

More malls to indulge you in the New Year

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More dollars to flow in Indian retail post Tesco clearance

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According to retail industry executives, some of the top European, Japanese and Korean retailers are seriously pursuing Indian retail. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

With a direct investment, UK-based Tesco can add to the best practices it already brings to Tata's retail business. (Business Standard)

Trent's Tesco edge can speed up profitability

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Tesco plans cautious India entry after arm-twisting by politicians

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It took months of arm-twisting and assurances from New Delhi to persuade British retailer Tesco Plc to take the plunge and become the first foreign player to set up a chain of supermarkets in India. (Reuters)

 
 
 

Tesco seeks to invest US$110m in Trent, India. 'We'd like to get more involved in this exciting market,' says Trevor Masters, CEO, Tesco Asia. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

UK's Tesco eyes 50:50 supermarket JV with Tata

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Tesco applies to enter the Indian market, other might not dip their toes in Subcontinent yet

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Tesco, the third-biggest retailer in the world, has applied to India's Foreign Investment Promotion Board and initially plans to invest $110 million in the country. On acceptance of the bid, Tesco will operate in India through a 50-50 partnership with the Mumbai-based conglomerate, Tata group. (International Business Times)

 
 
 

Tesco's $110-mn investment will build on existing portfolio of Star Bazaar stores in Maharashtra and Karnataka. (Business Standard)

Tesco to enter Indian retail through JV with Tatas

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Coke @ 20 ups the cola game

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Having invested $3.5 billion, Coca-Cola India has earmarked an additional $5 billion for the next seven years, in line with chief executive Muhtar Kent’s dream of making India the company’s fifth largest market globally, in terms of volume. (Money Indices)

 
 
 

Retailers in India are trying to catch customers through every means possible - online, offline, mobile and television. And traditional brick-and-mortar players such as Titan, Croma, Madura Retail, Fabindia and Vijay Sales have jumped on the e-wagon. (The Week)

E-haw! - Traditional retailers take to the internet

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Single brand retailers keen to mingle with Indian middle-class

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India's Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) cleared investment proposals adding up to Rs 12,000 crore over the last one year, as global players look to tap the great Indian middle class. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

On its way to take a greater control of its Indian arm, the French brand Celio is banking on a full-fledged team, and international designing and sourcing chops. (Business Standard)

Celio to outfit Indian arm with global look

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Is M&S ready to make its mark on in India?

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Faced with declining clothing sales in its home market, British retailer Marks & Spencer is looking overseas for growth, with a new focus announced this week to make India its largest international market in the next three years. But is M&S being overly ambitious in its plans? What challenges does it face? And would it be better-served exploring opportunities elsewhere? (just-style.com)

 
 
 

If Page Industries, the Bangalore-based manufacturer and distributor of international innerwear brand Jockey is in the spotlight today, it’s because of a strategic move it made four years ago. (Businessworld)

Jockey: Thunder Down Under

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Marks & Spencer plans to open 44 more stores in India by 2016

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Marks & Spencer (M&S) on Monday said it expects to have 80 stores in India by 2016, making the country the largest international market by stores outside of the UK. CEO Marc Bolland says India is the retailer’s new ‘priority market’ and a ‘key sourcing hub’. (MINT)

 
 
 

PepsiCo and Coca-Cola are in a competition of another kind, both saying on Monday they would invest huge amounts in India. If they do come about as promised, investments amounting to a total of $10 billion will come in from the two cola giants by 2020. (Financial Chronicle )

India fizz to cola war: Pepsi to bring in $5.5b, Coke $5b

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Big Bazaar ups its fashion sense

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Kishore Biyani's flagship clothing brand signs on cricketer Shikhar Dhawan and mulls neighbourhood stores. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Happy hours, a concept limited to liquor, is finding its way into quick-service restaurant and cafe chains, as chains look to prop up sales during a slowdown. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

Happy hours in quick service restaurants and cafes now

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Failed malls in India point to soured retail boom

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The majority of India's shopping centres are struggling with a potent mix of high real-estate prices, bad planning and sluggish demand as the economy slows. (AFP)

 
 
 

Barely a week after the world's top retailer Walmart ended its association with Bharti Group, its British rival Tesco has moved a step closer to entering the Indian retail market with the Tatas launching a neighbourhood convenience store format modelled on Tesco Express. (The Economic Times)

Tata opens 'Star Daily' with Tesco’s retail expertise and back-end support

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Big retailers find profit swallowed

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Aggressive expansion in a difficult economic environment and delays in foreign investment are proving costly for the retailers. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

With McCafe opening its doors in India on Monday, there's one more reason to go out for a cup of coffee. For McDonald's India, McCafe represents a host of opportunities. (Moneycontrol.com)

McCafe to make India debut, will it attract consumers?

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Wal-Mart, Bharti both stand to benefit from split

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This week's news that US retail group Wal-Mart Stores and conglomerate Bharti Enterprises have dissolved their joint venture in India came as little surprise to industry watchers. Both groups appear better placed to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the country's high-growth food retail sector on a stand-alone basis. (just-food.com)

 
 
 

After waiting for years to open superstores in India, the world’s biggest retailer, Walmart, has split with its Indian partner, delaying its ambitious plans to expand in the country. (Voice of America)

Walmart Delays Plans to Enter Indian Retail Market

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Walmart's Bumpy Indian Safari

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How patient will Walmart be with a market that is playing hard to get and is pretty much tough to ignore? (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Wal-Mart Stores, after its break-up with Bharti Enterprises, does not have any immediate plan to get into retailing in the country, making India the only market where the world's largest retailer will limit itself to the wholesale space. Why? (The Economic Times)

After Bharti, Walmart in no hurry to get into retailing

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A Slew of Break-Ups in the Retail Space

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It is the season of break-ups in the Indian retail space. In the last two months, three joint venture partners have decided to part ways in the market. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Wal-Mart Stores announced that it had indefinitely delayed its once ambitious plans to open hundreds of superstores in its own brand across the country. (New York Times)

Wal-Mart Drops Ambitious Expansion Plan for India

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Wal-Mart and Bharti Enterprises call off India JV

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With the separation from its partner, Bharti Group, Walmart is set to take over the existing wholesale (large format cash & carry) business in India and will need a new local partner if it wishes to open retail stores. (Reuters)

 
 
 

Family-owned consumer durables retailer Vijay Sales scaled up rapidly from 2006, sensing impending competition from biggies such as Reliance Retail, Croma. (Business Standard - The Strategist)

Vijay Sales prefers the ‘slow and steady’ approach

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Starbucks' entry into Bangalore market to froth up cafe market

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American giant Starbucks is expected to jostle with the likes of homegrown Cafe Coffee Day, and imports like Costa Coffee, Barista, Gloria Jeans and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf; in a market where drinking kaapi has been a centuries-old tradition. (DNA)

 
 
 

The Future Group recently launched Big Bazaar Direct, a cross between e-commerce and door-to-door sales. The Strategist looks at the factors that can make or break Kishore Biyani's ambitious new venture. (Business Standard - The Strategist)

Unravelling Big Bazaar Direct

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Satisfaction guaranteed

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How online retailers are turning reverse logistics challenges into competitive advantages and new revenue streams. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Credit card issuers have been working with retailers to offer special "no interest" offers for years, but the Reserve Bank of India said the plans were misleading as they often have hidden costs. (Wall Street Journal)

RBI Blocks “Interest Free” Plans

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Starbucks gets off to a spirited start in India

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The world's most popular coffee brand Starbucks sold coffee, snacks and merchandise averaging almost Rs 1.5 crore per outlet from its 11 doors in just five months since opening its first outlet in Mumbai last October. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Aditya Birla Retail Ltd (ABRL), retail arm of the Aditya Birla Group, had been eyeing break-even in 2012-13, the sixth year of its operations. But that milestone remains elusive, with the retailer posting losses of Rs 510 crore last financial year, according to disclosures made with the registrar of companies. (Business Standard)

Break-even eludes More, but expansion on track

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Confusing rules deter foreign supermarkets from India

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A year since India reduced foreign investment barriers to its retail sector to spur flagging economic growth, confusing rules and political uncertainty are keeping overseas supermarket giants away, analysts say. (Agence France Presse)

 
 
 

An increasing number of people are turning to traditional kirana stores to tame rising budgets, in the process impacting the usually resilient fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector. (Financial Express)

FMCG biz shrinks under inflation fire

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Aadi, shraadh sales liven up dull shopping season

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In the last few years, due to (promotional) campaigns, Indian consumers have been buying during the traditionally ‘inauspicious period’. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

If 120 new malls have come up in the last two years, 40 have downed shutters. Some lessons from the experiences of dying malls. (Business Standard)

That sinking feeling

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Premium brands see spurt in sales

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Availability of foreign brands at affordable rates is driving the sales, even as local economy struggles. (Mint)

 
 
 

As vegetable prices go through the roof, organised retail seems to be failing in farm-to-fork delivery. (Financial Chronicle)

Spilling the beans

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Id — a marketing idea yet to arrive

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Usual sales are happening in Ramzan month, but there seems hardly any festival-related product on offer specifically for Eid. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

With online shopping picking up, brick-and-mortar retailers are devising ways to stay ahead by offering incentives to walk-in customers and see integrating physical and online stores as boosting sales. (The Hindu Businessline)

Retailers go omni-channel for clicks and footfalls

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ColorPlus sketches out a makeover

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Raymond's once-popular casual wear brand had started showing signs of fatigue. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The growth in Indian retail has brought in its wake fresh challenges for HR. Here's how the leaders are dealing with them. (Business Standard - The Strategist)

HR Management in Retail

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India eases investment rules for retail sector

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India relaxed sourcing and investment rules for the retail sector on Thursday in a renewed attempt to attract foreign supermarket chains such as Wal-Mart Stores and Tesco. Foreign companies have been keen to enter India's $500 billion retail market since the country allowed foreign investment in its supermarket sector in September 2012 but ambiguity around entry rules has kept them away.(Reuters)

 
 
 

The consumer durables and infotech retail chain space is seeing an interesting battle for leadership. (Business Standard)

RDigital snaps at Croma's heels

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International brands to raise prices on weak rupee

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International retail brands will increase prices in the upcoming Autumn-Winter season, with the rupee depreciation having raised costs for them. The rupee has depreciated by 12% against the dollar since February. (The Times of India)

 
 
 

The Indian government is making yet another push to attract FDI in retail, but analysts call for more powerful measures to boost foreign investment. (CNBC TV18 / Moneycontrol.com)

Experts call for more than ease in FDI approvals to boost investment

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Blank billboards wait for ads

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Advertising and promotional spends are shrinking even as the supply of such ad space outstrips demand in the metros. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Driving footfalls is indispensable now with rising grocery bills. Hypermarkets are battling consumers looking to cut consumption. But playing on price by offering lower rates might not be the way out. . (Business Standard - Smart Investor)

Retailers take the differentiation call

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Why we love Zara

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The brand’s success in India spells new and befuddling challenges for ready-to-wear Indian fashion - Shefalee Vasudev discusses why. (MINT)

 
 
 

Two sources within the Bentonville, Arkansas-based company's Indian unit say it is unlikely to apply for its first retail store license before March 2015. The company has said it needs a further 12 to 18 months after winning government approval to open each store, which means its first retail outlet in the country would open in 2016 at the earliest. (Reuters)

Wal-Mart's India expansion is stalled

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Imported food items may cost up to 20% more on rupee slide

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As most food importers work on a shipment cycle of 35-40 days, the impact of the depreciating rupee will be strongly felt in the next few weeks and months, if not longer. Some items could possibly go off shelves as importers wait for rupee to become less volatile. (MINT)

 
 
 

A slew of global fashion labels have set up shop in India in the past few years. But why are the Indian prices higher than those abroad? Does this matter to the well-travelled customer? Shikha Kumar finds out. (DNA)

A high price for fashion?

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Star Bazaar, too, has a pre-paid card now

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If designed well, pre-paid cards can ensure frequent visits by the consumer, with scope for additional purchases by the same consumer. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

New rules requiring foreign supermarkets to set up their own warehouses and stores in India are likely to further delay the entry of companies like Wal-Mart, increase costs and hurt cash-strapped local retailers eager to partner with foreign companies. (Reuters)

New FDI rules a setback for foreign, local retailers

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Les marques étrangères profitent
de l’ouverture du commerce de détail

Lire l’article

L’assouplissement de la réglementation indienne sur le commerce de détail a créé un
appel d’air pour les marques étrangères qui lorgnent sur une classe moyenne en pleine
croissance. Les marques françaises sont à la traîne.(Le Moci)

 
 
 

Global they might be, but the café chains have woken up to the potential of coffee in smaller towns and cities in India. (The Hindu - Businessline)

Working Up Some Steam

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USL increases focus on higher-priced brands

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After McDowell’s success, USL has increased focus on higher-priced brands. United Spirits expects its other premium brands to continue growing faster than the market this year. (MINT)

 
 
 

Of late, every third advertisement that we see on television has some South Indian connect or element attached to it. So, are marketers trying to engage the so called ‘conservative’ South Indians? (The Hindu - Businessline)

Are we like this only?

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Raymond to focus on growth, profitability

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Firm says 2013-14 will see a lower proportion of discounted sales, better control over inventory levels. (MINT)

 
 
 

Ready to take your standalone store national? Here's a road map for the expansion. (Business Standard)

Step by Step

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The Return of Retail

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The economy may be slowing down, but Indian retail is back with a bang. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Regulations govering foreign investment in retail limit Tesco's flexibility and operational framework in India. (Business Standard)

Tesco treads cautiously in India

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Damp Squib

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FDI in multi-brand retail yet to take off as cautious investors wait and watch. (The Week)

 
 
 

Gap, H&M and Uniqlo are among the international heavyweights turning their attentions to India following economic reforms that have finally opened up this potentially lucrative market. (Drapers)

Global Report: India

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Women driving demand for branded sunglasses

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Availability of multiple brands, and a marked shift towards them is driving growth for branded subglasses in India, say experts. (MINT)

 
 
 

The British retail brand has gone in for focused segmentation in India to ease navigation by shoppers. (Business Standard)

Marks & Spencer boosts sub-brands

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Decathlon sets off with 100% FDI in sports retail

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French group Auchan has announced its first retail store, Decathlon, in Bangalore. It is the first big-format niche retail chain to open in an increasingly fitness-conscious urban India that craves for sporting space and quality equipment. (Forbes India)

 
 
 

5-7 more foreign players are keen to give the likes of Starbucks, Coffee Bean and Costa a run for their rupee income. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

Global cafe chains look to steam open India

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Startup Services for Entrepreneurs Focused on Low-Income Markets

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Ennovent, a company that accelerates innovations for sustainability in low income markets, is launching its new offering, Startup Services, in partnership with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). (Yourstory.in)

 
 
 

After an indifferent performance in the past few years, the Aditya Birla group's retail chain has gone for a course correction. The new mantra is: cautious aggression. (Business Standard)

'More' in comeback mode

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A Safe Passage to India

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India is one of retail's most attractive developing markets, but it's also one of the most difficult to enter. Liz Morrell reports on how the doors are beginning to open. (Retail Week)

 
 
 

Imagine walking into a McDonald’s outlet for a McSpicy Paneer burger and also getting to pick up a cup of cappuccino from a Cafe Coffee Day (CCD) counter inside. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

Frenemy format: Will McDonald's, CCD share table?

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Multinationals in the spotlight as officials get tough on tax

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Multinational corporations such as Vodafone, Shell and Nokia are rarely out of the business pages as the Indian tax officials seemingly never-ending chasing of unpaid taxes gives daily fodder to the Indian press. (International Bar Association)

 
 
 

Several foreign fashion brands have split with their local (Indian) partners in the past five years. Taneesha Kulshrestha explores what went wrong with the relationships. (Outlook Business)

Changing Partners

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Fossil, Decathlon, Promod cleared for FDI

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French brands Promod, Decathlon and Le Creuset and U.S. firm Fossil Inc. will invest a total of Rs. 7.5 billion, or about US$140 million, in India. (WWD - Womens Wear Daily)

 
 
 

Aigner, the German luxury brand, and Genesis Luxury, the up-market retailing arm of Genesis Colors, have ended their tie-up in the country, as their plans did not go as expected. (Business Standard)

Aigner, Genesis Luxury part ways

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Zara's Indian unit Inditex Trent made profits in two out of the three years

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In India, where some of the best-known international labels have met their Waterloo, Zara has proven to be adept at selling fine feathers to the fashion-conscious. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

After weak demand and piled-up inventory forced clothing retailers to give discounts for longer than usual in 2012, companies such as Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd, DLF Brands Ltd and Lifestyle International Pvt. Ltd say they will not extend their sale period this year. (MINT - A Wall Street Journal Partner)

Retailers likely to curb sale periods after prolonged discounts in 2012

Read the article

 
 
 

Future Group: The Next Big Thing

Read the article

Retail king Kishore Biyani now wants to be an FMCG giant and he has just taken the first few steps in that journey. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

It’s not even mid-January yet, but a "flat 50% off" sale is already on at an apparel brand outlet at Mumbai's poshest mall. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

At malls, sale signs are up real early

Read the article

 
 
 

An attempt to make chai cool again

Read the article

Tea’s popularity in Indian homes, in fact, acts against its image. Coffee is considered a lifestyle statement, while tea is ordinary. (DNA - Daily News & Analysis)

 
 
 

Consumers wait for incomes to rise, prices to fall and interest rates to drop to splurge. But retail players have their task cut out: they need to survive in the short term to remain in business. (Financial Chronicle)

If we get money, will spend

Read the article

 
 
 

Levi’s struggles to be a regular fit for GeNext

Read the article

After dominating the organised denim market over the past decade, competition from other global brands as well as a rash of local labels have resulted in a disconnect for Levi's with the youth. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Quality space and high street seem to sell even in a slow economy. While many malls in the country are going vacant and space supply surpassing demand in many cities, shortage of quality space and heavy demand from retailers for high-footfall areas have pushed up high-street rents. (Business Standard)

Rentals go through the roof on high street

Read the article

 
 
 

McDonald’s to go in for makeover

Read the article

Firm aiming to revamp look of restaurants in south, west India to retain maturing customers. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

His rivals and analysts may not agree, but Future group Founder and CEO Kishore Biyani insists that his mall concept, Central and discount chain Brand Factory, have become “the largest department store network” in the country. (Business Standard)

Biyani's next big thing: Central & Brand Factory

Read the article

 
 
 

Festival season worst in 4 years

Read the article

This festival season was the worst in 4 years say retailers, with only some big box retailers witnessing a bumper sale this season. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

E-commerce sites are giving out home makeovers, wardrobe offers and free gift deliveries during the ongoing festive season to woo customers. Most of the sites offer additional products, other than discounts, to lure customers. (Business Standard)

E-tailers woo customers with gifts this festive season

Read the article

 
 
 

Retailers not bullish this festive season

Read the article

With consumer spending still not encouraging, retailers are not as ambitious on their prospects this festive period as compared to the previous years even as they expect a pick up in sales. (The Times of India)

 
 
 

The Seattle-headquartered Starbucks opened its first store in India, kickstarting what could be a sedate rollout, going ahead. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

At Horniman Circle opener, Starbucks sets premium tone

Read the article

 
 
 

How to get the best deal for your car

Read the article

"Bring the old and take a new one." Manufacturers and dealers of white goods and cars come up with exchange offers during the festive season. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

A welcome sign in six languages—Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Gujarati, French and English—greets customers at the entrance to India’s first Starbucks store, which opened Friday at Horniman circle in south Bombay, offering a glimpse of the localization that the Tata group and Starbucks Corp. are attempting. (MINT)

Starbucks opens its first store in India

Read the article

 
 
 

Mahindra Group to change product mix, may open stores outside India

Read the article

Mahindra Group plans to rejig its retail business by changing the product mix at its stores with more apparels, expanding aggressively through franchisee stores and even setting up stores abroad. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

After opening 100 stores in the last four years under ‘Mom & Me’ brand, Mahindra Retail, the low profile retailing arm of of $15.5 billion Mahindra Group, wants to go full steam. (Business Standard)

Mahindra plans retail blitz

Read the article

 
 
 

VIP repositions itself as lifestyle brand

Read the article

VIP, the luggage company, is positioning itself as a lifestyle brand by diversifying into handbags under the brand name Caprese. (MINT)

 
 
 

Durables makers and retailers are pushing premium products this festive season with discounts, gifts and attractive finance schemes to improve their overall profitability. (The Economic Times)

Big festive offers on high-end items

Read the article

 
 
 

Ikea explores giving India touch to different products and designs

Read the article

A few months ago, a team from IKEA visited Indian homes across various income groups to understand what kind of design and products could work in India. Experts say a localisation strategy will help IKEA connect with Indian consumers. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Separate consumer surveys have found that consumer sentiment continues to remain subdued and is unlikely to improve in a hurry. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

Slowing same store sales to hurt retailers

Read the article

 
 
 

Madura to enter kidswear segment

Read the article

Madura Fashions and Lifestyle is stitching plans to reposition its premium menswear brand Allen Solly as a family product. The company will enter the kidswear segment early next year with a formal national roll-out. (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

Grocery portals and online retail models abound. But only those that can keep costs low will survive. (Businessworld)

Now, Add To Online Cart: Groceries

Read the article

 
 
 

Infiniti Retail buys Woolworths India

Read the article

Infiniti Retail, Tata Sons’ wholly owned subsidiary that runs Croma consumer electronic goods chain, has acquired Australian major Woolworths Wholesale’s Indian arm. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

 
 
 

FMCG companies are dusting off their strategy of selling products in small sized packs to prop up falling sales in the discretionary food segment. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

Smaller packs see big interest

Read the article

 
 
 

Durables brands offer free gifts, discounts to buck slowdown

Read the article

Consumers can look forward to some mouth-watering bargains this festive season as white goods makers and lifestyle retailers ready to dole out freebies and special discounts to prop up demand at a time when sales have slowed down. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

What gets the average kiranawallah excited about joining the country's top retailer when opposition leaders are in the streets saying the government's decision to allow foreign investment in multi-brand retail sounds the death knell for corner shops? (The Economic Times)

Grocers want franchises of KB's Fair Price format

Read the article

 
 
 

India's Retail Reform

Read the article

Moves last week by the Indian government to open the country's multi-brand retail sector to foreign investment have been hailed as everything from a "historic decision" to a "big bang" reform. (just-style.com)

 
 
 

The Indian luxury market is going through a shake-up. Even as the country went full throttle in projecting itself as the most happening destination for luxury sales, recent developments seem contradictory. Why is there a shake-up in the market? (Week)

The luxe flux

Read the article

 
 
 

Discount apparel mart halves

Read the article

Things haven't turned out as per expectations for discounters as fewer footfalls and inventory pile-ups have reduced the industry to half in the last one year. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

 
 
 

India’s retail industry, which is pegged at $450 billion, could expand manifold with the opening up of foreign direct investment (FDI) on Friday. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

53 cities qualify for retail FDI

Read the article

 
 
 

Economic reforms finally take off

Read the article

A day after it raised the prices of diesel and restricted supply of subsidized LPG, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government decided to push its political gamble further by opening up multi-brand retailing, civil aviation and the broadcast sectors. (Forbes)

 
 
 

Ben and Jerry’s Homemade Inc. signature ice cream flavours may soon be available in India, joining other international and domestic food and snack brands expanding in the country. (MINT)

Ben & Jerry’s may come to India

Read the article

 
 
 

Kolkata highest revenue-grossing market

Read the article

So what if West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee fights tooth and nail against foreign investment in retail, Kolkata has emerged a true city of joy for big retailers and fast-food chains since she came to power. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Poor same-store sales have forced many stores to extend the sale period, boosting volumes but impacting margins. (Hindu Businessline)

Festive sales may fall ‘flat’ on extended discount season

Read the article

 
 
 

Bharat surpasses India in consumption

Read the article

For the first time in a quarter century, rural India outdid urban consumption in the past two years. Rural spending rode on a big increase in incomes, mainly resulting from non-farm jobs and rural employment guarantee schemes. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

Stung by a consumption slowdown and cut-throat competition from other quick-service chains, Big Mac is trying hard to give customers more reasons to come to its stores. So its latest India menu now comprises a differential pricing strategy and better in-store experience. (Business Standard)

Big Mac's different strokes

Read the article

 
 
 

Macros spook food joints, but only just

Read the article

Now, macroeconomic woes are impacting even quick service restaurants (QSRs), the 150-3,000 square feet neighbourhood dine-in / takeaway food joints that serve up your pizzas, burgers and rolls. (Daily News & Analysis)

 
 
 

Retailers are bleeding. The ‘sale’ season whose duration has been stretched of late, has pushed brands and retailers to despair, in spite of shoppers’ frenzy. (Daily News & Analysis)


Sale frenzy morphs into retail worry

Read the article

 
 
 

Max signs pact with France’s Auchan, to rebrand India stores

Read the article

Max Hypermarket India, part of the Dubai-based retailer Landmark group, has signed a franchise agreement with French retailer Auchan for India. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

The Future Group is rationalising its retail formats and space and looking to to focus on better inventory, more efficient store operations. (Financial Chronicle)

Pantaloon cuts Food Bazaar, eZone outlets in major rejig

Read the article

 
 
 

Big Bazaar goes online in Mumbai

Read the article

Big Bazaar's move to create an online presence could boost sales without the proportionate store, salary costs. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

People may not love the rains, but monsoon sales are the favourite with most of them, but is that the best time to buy? (The Economic Times)

Avoid impulse-buying at a sale

Read the article

 
 
 

Thinking Small

Read the article

In the wake of the Pantaloon Retail deal, Biyani is focusing on expanding Central’s footprint: scaling down size to scale up operations. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Coffee consumption has kicked off exponentially in the Indian market and the latest player to offer the cuppa is Swiss brand Coffee World. (Pitch)

Coffee World to invest Rs. 50 crore in expansion

Read the article

 
 
 

Govt Seen Relaxing Rules To Keep IKEA Interested

Read the article

The government appears set to relax sourcing rules for retailers, anxious not to scare off IKEA. (Businessworld/Reuters)

 
 
 

Foreign investment in India has slowed down in recent months, but a recent United Nations survey says Asia's third largest economy continues to be an attractive investment destination for global companies. (Voice of America)

FDI Slows, But India Still Attractive

Read the article

 
 
 

What Ikea brings to the table

Read the article

The price warrior has to tweak its do-it-yourself strategy in India. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The desire to use expensive stationery is on the upswing despite the advent of tablets and hand-held devices changing the way people communicate. (MINT)

Growing connoisseurs of premium stationery

Read the article

 
 
 

Ikea goes flat out with ideas in India

Read the article

Ikea wants to bring its collapsible furniture to India and plans to conquer the country with a massive plan that includes a nearly US$1.8 billion investment drive. (The National)

 
 
 

Two major international brands, IKEA and Coca-Cola, have announced plans to invest billions of dollars in the country. (Channel News Asia)

IKEA, Coca-Cola make inroads into India

Read the article

 
 
 

What’s your fit - slim, super slim or skinny?

Read the article

A new generation of young male consumers doesn’t seem to mind agonizing over choices when buying fashionably tight-fitting clothes. (MINT)

 
 
 

Statistics from the nodal agency that clears foreign investments reveal that a number of top brands have put forth proposals to increase their stake in a JV or expand their presence in India. (Fashion United)

Global brands relook at India partnerships

Read the article

 
 
 

Men join women in the boot camp

Read the article

Men’s love affair with their shoes is gathering a lot of steam in India, and several upscale overseas and local brands think it worth their while to vie for custom. (MINT)

 
 
 

Ikea has submitted a proposal to invest €1.5 billion, with plans to open 25 stores in Asia's third largest economy and source $1 billion stock from India in coming years. (Reuters and MINT)

IKEA proposes to invest €1.5 billion in India
Read the Reuters article and
Read the MINT article

 
 
 

Suntory forms JV with majority stake in India

Read the article

Japanese conglomerate Suntory, known for its whiskies and beers, has picked up majority stake in a subsidiary of Mumbai-based Narang Group to enter India's non-alcoholic beverage market. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Anita Dongre, lifestyle and fashion designer, has used a strong market segmentation strategy and a well-planned retail presence to establish herself. (Pitch)

Anita Dongre creates designer labels for masses

Read the article

 
 
 

Indian retailers retrench as reform hopes dashed

Read the article

Six months after the government backtracked on plans to allow foreign retail giants such as Wal-Mart Stores and Carrefour to form joint ventures, cash-starved domestic chains are selling assets, shutting stores, and scaling back expansion plans. (Reuters)

 
 
 

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries, continues to be optimistic about the conglomerate's retail business. (Financial Chronicle)

Reliance Retail targets Rs. 40,000 cr in 3-4 years

Read the article

 
 
 

Modern retail: Small town India checkmates metros

Read the article

Tier II towns are in the midst of a retail revolution, where supermarkets and hypermarkets are booming, offering a wide array of choices and cool comfort to shop. For retailers, doing business here means lower rentals and other costs. (Daily News and Analysis)

 
 
 

Sluggish demand has led lifestyle retail chains to post weak same-store sales in January-March 2012 and lower growth estimates for this fiscal. (The Economic Times)

Lifestyle retail chains post weak same-store sales in January-March quarter

Read the article

 
 
 

Pantaloons Sell Out: Season's First Sale

Read the article

After the Pantaloons-Aditya Birla Nuvo deal, more retail chains are expected to follow suit. (Outlook Money)

 
 
 

American doughnut maker Krispy Kreme has flagged off its India plans barely a week after rival Dunkin' Donuts opened shop in the country. (The Economic Times)

American doughnut makers Krispy Kreme and Dunkin' Donuts now play out rivalry in India

Read the article

 
 
 

Spar and Max Decide to Part Ways

Read the article

Dutch retailer Spar International and Dubai-based Landmark Group's Max Hypermarkets have decided to part ways in India by the end of this year after the two developed differences over expansion strategy. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

What really went wrong with the way Reebok was run? According to a top North India-based distributor, the franchisee model running for the last few years was flawed. (The Hindu Businessline)

'Flawed' Sales Model Stops Reebok Run

Read the article

 
 
 

Consolidation - Key to Organized Retail

Read the article

The sale of a controlling stake in Pantaloon Retail to Kumar Mangalam Birla has showed consolidation as a path forward for India’s staggering organized retail sector. (Fashion United)

 
 
 

The Pantaloon-Aditya Birla Nuvo deal is a win-win situation for both the companies. (Businessworld)

Future Perfect

Read the article

 
 
 

Walmart declares war on Amazon

Read the article

Walmart is to set up a global platform in Bangalore joining e-commerce websites in different countries. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Pantaloons is to be demerged from Pantaloons Retail India Limited, the Biyani flagship, but even with a majority stake of the Aditya Birla group may continue to be led by PRIL's management. (Financial Chronicle and Businessworld)

Aditya Birla Nuvo To Buy Pantaloon
Read the article from Businessworld

Kumar Birla gets all of Pantaloons chain
Read the article from Financial Chronicle

 
 
 

Next, Vijay Sales and other retailers go slow on Samsung after margin cut

Read the article

More than 750 electronics stores in India have either stopped selling Samsung products or cut back on fresh orders after the Korean brand slashed dealer margins on its televisions and home appliances early this year. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Tata International is set to distribute Merrell & Caterpillar footwear, apparel brands in India. (Financial Chronicle)

Tata International forms JV with Wolverine

Read the article

 
 
 

Jawed Habib: 50 salons abroad with P&G help

Read the article

Hair stylist Jawed Habib, with more than 300 salons across India, plans to take his venture global in a strategic partnership with Procter & Gamble. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

A new government circular clarifying FDI norms puts a question mark on India’s e-tailing companies. (Businessworld)

Endgame For E-Tail?

Read the article

 
 
 

At This Eatery, It's A Free For All

Read the article

Ajay Jain has built his business -- the Kunzum Cafe -- on love and fresh air…almost! (Forbes India)

 
 
 

Futurebazaar.com was set up around five years ago as a B2C business, but is now looking to tap into B2B corporate gifting with more products and deals. (Financial Chronicle)

Futurebazaar.com to add B2B to B2C arm

Read the article

 
 
 

Mumbai bubble just waiting to burst

Read the article

Mumbai has all the appearances of a city with an unsustainable property market with house prices and rents at exorbitant levels right across the islands. (The National)

 
 
 

Once again the Central Government doesn't seem to have listened to retailers' calls. Janees Reghelini analyses this year's budget. (Retail Today)

Retail Still in the Cold

Read the article

 
 
 

Versace, Guess, Corneliani set to split from their Indian partners

Read the article

International fashion brands Versace, Corneliani and Guess are breaking away from their current Indian partners. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Eating out joints, including youth centric quick service restaurants such as McDonald's and Subway, now have a loyal clientele among senior citizens. (The Economic Times)

Restaurants add senior citizens to their platter

Read the article

 
 
 

Premji fund buys 5% in Trent

Read the article

Azim Premji's investment fund, PremjiInvest, has bought nearly half the shares on offer in the recently concluded qualified institutional placement (QIP) of the Tata group’s listed retailer Trent. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

Major Brands India, the India partner of premium brands such as Mango, Charles & Keith and Aldo is now looking to add some heft in the affordable brands segment. (Financial Chronicle)

Major Brands eyes affordable fashion space

Read the article

 
 
 

Workwear segment poised for huge growth

Read the article

The session on “Workwear Market Scenario in India” on the second day of InFashion 2012 at Mumbai focussed on the consumption potential of the workwear segment. (Indiaretailing.com)

 
 
 

Planet Retail plans to reduce and restructure the pace of expansion in India across brands and may miss its break-even target. (MINT)

Planet Retail cuts investment, expansion plans

Read the article

 
 
 

Men, Why even they shop till they drop

Read the article

Indian men have turned into experimental shoppers. There is a similarity between males and females with respect to experimenting with new things. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Titan Industries, which started with a watch brand, is taking a fresh gamble -- to turn into a full-scale lifestyle company. (The Times of India)

Titan bid to Fastrack into a lifestyle brand

Read the article

 
 
 

Say Laddoo, pickle and cheese

Read the article

India's traditional cuisine is holding its own in the company of Western foods like Dutch Gouda and Italian Parmigiano in modern retail stores. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

 
 
 

Prepaid cards have become the latest retail tool to keep consumers hooked to brands, offering convenience and safety. (The Times of India)

Retail chains adopt prepaid cards

Read the article

 
 
 

Marks & Spencer's changes Indian chief

Read the article

Marks and Spencer's has appointed Venu Nair as head of its India operations, replacing CEO Martin Jones who is moving back to the UK. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Homemakers are likely to love this - someone cutting vegetables for them for free, someone making chappatis for them, again at no charge. (The Times of India)

You can now have vegetables cut free

Read the article

 
 
 

Future revives JV deal with Skechers shoes

Read the article

The Future Group has revived JV talks with Skechers (USA) and seconded one of its seniormost executives as CEO of the proposed JV. (Financial Chronicle)

 
 
 

Several companies are trying to organise the home-focused services sector in India and bring in professionalism. (Mint)

Home maintenance goes corporate

Read the article

 
 
 

Amazon makes quiet entry into India

Read the article and Our Perspective

The world's largest online retailer is tiptoeing into India, using cover from a comparison shopping site Junglee.com it acquired 13 years ago. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

As the ice cream market in India evolves and there is much more on offer, single scoops and the common flavours are no longer enough for many consumers. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

Folks are dining on ice cream!

Read the article

 
 
 

Retailers try to sell more for less

Read the article

Spending on the High Street has never been cheaper for such a long period of time. Some of the biggest brands are literally shouting from the rooftops that they are offering up to 70% discounts. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The world's second-largest apparel retailer Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), which usually enters large markets on its own, is not so sure about opening shop in India despite finding the market "interesting". (The Economic Times)

Hennes & Mauritz wary of entering in India

Read the article

 
 
 

Bombay Store aims to grow younger

Read the article

More than a century old, The Bombay Store is looking to attract youth with The Elephant Company, a young, quirky brand. (The Hindu BusinessLine)

 
 
 

Dutch-based supermarket chain Spar International plans to partner with multiple firms to expand its retail presence in India, a senior company executive said on Wednesday. (Mint)

Spar plans tie-ups with multiple firms

Read the article

 
 
 

Will luxury brands lap up 100 pc FDI?

Read the article

Contrary to popular belief that allowing 100 per cent in single brand retail will give impetus to luxury brands in India and bring down costs, experts have a more conservative view. (Pitch)

 
 
 

India Inc has welcomed the lifting of the foreign direct investment (FDI) limit to 100 per cent on single brand retail. But retail sector specialists do not expect a stampede of investments any time soon. (The Hindu BusinessLine)

Never mind 100% FDI, foreign chains may not rush in

Read the article

 
 
 

100% FDI approved in single brand retail

Read the article from The National and Read the article from Retailer

The Manmohan Singh government has finally given its nod for the relaxation on the existing 51 per cent FDI in single brand retail, increasing it to a much awaited 100 per cent. Indians could soon experience the unique frustration of assembling Scandinavian flat-pack furniture as stores such as Ikea are to be allowed to open in the country. (from The National-UAE and Retailer)

 
 
 

Apparel retailers in India are extending their end-of-the-season discount sales period to clear inventory that has been piled up due to slowdown witnessed in earlier months. (Fibre2Fashion)

Indian apparel retailers extending sales

Read the article

 
 
 

Minding other people's business

Read the article

The entry of Future Supply Chain Solutions into multi-brand retail via a subsidiary has given some regional brands the kind of exposure they could only aspire to before. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Hit by a sharp slowdown in sales, apparel brands and retailers are either extending their end-of-the-season sales or advancing it by weeks to clear their inventory and free up cash. (Business Standard and Economic Times)

Year-end discounts start early

Read the Business Standard article and Read the Economic Times article

 
 
 

Andhra Pradesh government seeks tie-up with Tesco, Bharti-Walmart

Read the article

The Andhra Pradesh state government is drawing up plans to open swanky supermarkets, venturing into the multi-brand retail territory with multinational retailers such as Walmart and Tesco, but the proposed partnership will need alignment of objectives.(The Economic Times)

 
 
 

2012 will be the year of moderation in consumer spending across durable, consumer goods and apparel, as industry experts foresee an unfavourable sentiment gripping consumers, which could make companies cautious in their growth talk. (Daily News & Analysis - DNA)

After festive cheer, grim reality

Read the article

 
 
 

Four brands nearing Rs. 500 cr annual revenue

Read the article

With critical mass now available in the Indian market, four companies have a positive outlook despite the gloomy overall economic scenario, targeting 100 million dollars each in sales. (Mint)

 
 
 

Football clubs are jumping on the Indian sportswear bandwagon, pursuing the huge scope for growth in a US$900 million market. (The National)

Football and India -- a friendly match

Read the article

 
 
 

Retail executives turn entrepreneurs

Read the article

India's retail industry is buzzing with entrepreneurial activity as a growing number of retail professionals trade in salaries for their own wall art chains, lingerie brand, and beer cafes. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

FDI in retail will usher in changes in the shopping experience, believe experts. But, even without it, Kerala's textile retailers have been dressing up in style. A look at the action. (The Hindu - BusinessLine)

God's Own Retail Lab

Read the article

 
 
 

Retailers anxious, government seems confident

Read the article

The industry is turning nervous about the prospects of single-brand retail, since the government has yet to notify a Cabinet decision raising the foreign investment level to 100 per cent, from the current 51 per cent. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Reliance Industries, a $50-billion-plus oil and gas giant, will enter the fast-food business with its own brand next year, opening yet another front to do business directly with India's growing young population. (The Economic Times)

Reliance Industries to enter fast-food business

Read the article

 
 
 

Try, Try, Try Again

Read the article

Foreign investment could change the way India retail firms function. But for now, most proponents of the policy will have to swallow their disappointment and hope that the government gets its act together enough to put it back on the agenda. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

With plans for raising FDI in single-brand retail from 51% to 100% getting the green signal, albeit possibly with riders, all is not lost for India Inc. (Outlook)

Get Ur Swoosh On

Read the article

 
 
 

New FDI rule hits roadblock in India

Read the article

Some predict foreign investment will herald a consumer revolution in the huge retail sector, some forecast doom for countless small traders and farmers. (China Daily Asia Pacific)

 
 
 

Traders in Karnataka are livid at the Centres move to allow 51% FDI in multi-brand retail, fearing that their business will be hit by predatory pricing. (The Times of India)

Traders fear FDI will bring predatory pricing

Read the article

 
 
 

Single-brand retail reform could see changes on high street

Read the article

The move to increase the 51% limit on foreign direct investment (FDI) in single-brand retail hasn’t attracted much attention, but could see a change in existing relationships and lead to a transformation of the Indian high street. (MINT)

 
 
 

The Indian government has proposed allowing single-brand retailers (such as the furniture giant IKEA) to wholly own stores in India, while multi-brand retailers (like Wal-Mart and Carrefour) can own a 51 percent stake. The moves, which have yet to be formalized, could greatly impact the supply chain landscape in this country of nearly 1.2 billion people. (American Shipper)

India opens door to foreign retailers

Read the article

 
 
 

Will FDI in retail help Biyani finally tie up with Carrefour?

Read the article

After foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail was approved by the Indian Government, could the Future Group enter into negotiations again with French retailer Carrefour? (The Hindu Businessline)

 
 
 

The supply chain efficiencies of cash-and-carry operations such as Metro are mainly beneficial to small retailers, as large format retailers choose to go direct to suppliers. (The Hindu Businessline)

Cash-and-Carry focussed on small retailers

Read the article

 
 
 

Targeting the savvy shoppers in India

Read the article

Kenneth Cole's entry into India comes at an opportune time - the American company wants to attract the young, brand-aware segment of consumers. (The National)

 
 
 

Starting with bookings for two of India's biggest obsessions - Bollywood films and cricket matches - e-ticketing companies have now diversified into other events too. (Business Today)

E-ticketing websites go all out

Read the article

 
 
 

India Tops Retail Shrinkage List

Read the article

Indian retailers suffered the highest loss of stocks to theft in the world, but the silver lining was that India is the world’s only country where the shrink rate came down in 2011, according to the Global Retail Theft Barometer 2011.(Asian Correspondent)

 
 
 

Retailers are countering the economic slowdown by offering interest-free equated monthly instalment (EMI) schemes, which they say are not only helping them pull customers into stores but also encouraging shoppers to buy higher value products. (The Economic Times)

Interest Free EMIs offered by retailers

Read the article

 
 
 

Gulliver's Travails

Read the article

The Lilliput Kidswear controversy could lead to irreconcilable differences, and weaker valuations. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Tommy Hilfiger is taking direct control of its operations to integrate India into its global sourcing and design programmes. (Business Standard)

Tommy Hilfiger goes in for solo play

Read the article

 
 
 

Falling Footfalls

Read the article

Vishal Krishna presents an in-depth analysis on why only a handful of India’s hundreds of malls make money, the 7 deadly sins that failed malls committed and what some of them are doing to correct course. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

High prices and economic uncertainty appear to be turning consumers stingy, if not altogether unwilling to spend. (Daily News & Analysis)

As goods turn dearer, bargain hunters grow

Read the article

 
 
 

Buoyant Expectations

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Even as participants at the Indian Retail Forum in Mumbai, the industry’s annual jamboree, are being cautiously optimistic, preliminary data from the first quarter of 2011-12 (FY12) reinforce the perception of a slowdown. But growth of space expansion continues. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Cafe chains in India are offering more than coffee to stay ahead of impending competition. (Businessworld)

A New Brew

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Tommy Hilfiger buys out Murjani in JV

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Tommy Hilfiger Group has bought out the Murjani Groupís 50% stake in the latterís joint venture (JV) with clothes maker Arvind Ltd for an undisclosed sum, as part of a global strategy of consolidating its operations and having a more direct role in its various markets. (MINT)

 
 
 

Shoppers Stop will be the launchpad for Paris Hilton's eponymous brand of handbags and accessories in India. (The Economic Times)

Paris Hilton to launch at Shoppers Stop

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All for personal taste

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To capture the hearts of millions of ever demanding consumers, a tweak in the products has become the ace card for a marketing game plan. (Retailer)

 
 
 

Reliance Retail has begun door-to-door direct selling through housewives and housing societies to boost sales of its private brands such as Sudz detergent, Amara soaps and Healthy Life food items. (The Economic Times)

Housewives to peddle Reliance retail wares

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Looking for good bargains? Go online

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Indian websites like snapdeal, taggle, sosasta, mydala offer up to 90% discount, pushing growth of online sales. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Indian personal-care (FMCG) companies have registered significant increases in revenue despite commodity inflation, as consumption patterns have gained momentum. (Businessworld)

The Time for Personal Growth

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Consultants, developers set up mall management firms

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Mall developers entering an increasingly crowded market are calling in experts to help them design and run their new projects. (Mint)

 
 
 

Who doesn't love to strike a deal, with discounts from 10 per cent to 90 per cent on lifestyle products and services? This is why group buying (discount deals) websites show strong potential in India. But there are many variables that these businesses need to pay attention to in order to succeed. (The Smart CEO)

The Art of Selling Discounts

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Denizen: A new avatar

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Levi's, with the launch of Signature, was being perceived as a mass brand. Can it make a U-turn after phasing out Signature and bringing in Denizen? (Pitch)

 
 
 

Apparel sales in the country have slumped about 20% since March, forcing many brands to start end-of-season discount sales two weeks earlier than usual. (The Economic Times)

Apparel sale slump after imposition of excise duty on branded garments

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Trent in talks with Inditex for one more brand

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Trent, the flagship retail arm of Tatas, is in talks with Spanish retailer Inditex group to bring another fashion brand, Massimo Dutti, to India. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Reliance's re-entry into the cash-and-carry business assumes significance even as global retailers such as Walmart, Tesco, Metro and Carrefour are expanding their presence in India, and amid anticipation that the government is likely to ease foreign direct investment (FDI) norms in retail. (Businessworld)

Reliance Retail Refreshed

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RIL looks to re-enter cash-&-carry

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Three years after its experimentation with cash-and-carry retail fizzled out, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) plans a strong comeback. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Considered as a mass brand in Spain, Zara came to India as a premium brand and has managed unprecendented success. How did Zara get its 4Ps right? (Pitch)

Zara: Premium Fashion

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Major Brands-Promod Plan JV, 40 Stores

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Major Brands (India) Pvt. Ltd, the local franchisee for fashion apparel and accessories brands such as Mango, Aldo, Charles & Keith and Nine West, will form a joint venture with French womenswear retailer Promod. (Mint)

 
 
 

Back in the race now, Shoppers Stop is gathering speed in expansion even as it improves operational glitches. (Businessworld)

Few Halts For Shoppers Stop

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Squeezing More Juice Per Fruit

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Drink makers are busy courting the thirsty and the health-conscious. Fruit beverage is seen as the next big squeeze, growing at a healthy clip of 25 per cent year-on-year. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Beaten on its home turf Delhi, the $1-bn Mother Dairy is crafting a new strategy to win back its base and go national. Mother Dairy is placing emphasis on value-added, high-margin products. (The Economic Times)

Billion-dollar Mother Dairy's new strategies

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A New Lifestyle

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Micky Jagtiani's Lifestyle International went slow when others were rushing. Now, it is ready with massive expansion plans in the Indian market. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Consumers are back to shopping with a vengeance. Retail rents are rising, too. (Businessworld)

Rush for Space Begins

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Western chains flock to India as fast food grows

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A number of fast-food and cafe chains that are flocking to India would do well to take away lessons learned by established rivals such as McDonald's in navigating a market beset with obstacles. (Reuters)

 
 
 

Inditex entered India with its flagship brand Zara on a Friday in May 2010 and that day the South Delhi outlet recorded the largest single-day sale by an international retailer in the country. The journey continues in 2011. (The Economic Times)

Zara favourite among Indian shoppers

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Makeover on the Shop Floor

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Almost all established department store chains are reinventing themselves in a bid to win customers who are spoilt for choice. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

A host of mall management companies are eyeing a INR 240 billion market. (Businessworld)

Maximising Footfalls

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Food Tech Holland Launched in India

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The Indian presence of the Dutch supply chain cluster, Food Tech Holland, was formally launched by Ashok Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Food Processing Industries, at the recently held Food Forum India 2011 in Mumbai. (Images Food)

 
 
 

Group buying websites, mostly launched in the last one year, plan aggressive expansion as they see record traffic for their offerings. (Business Standard)

Group buying sites eye expansion

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Retailer-manufacturer slugfest resurfaces

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The margin “issue” between retailers and manufacturers has resurfaced big time — whether between Reckitt and Future or consumer durables giants and Tata group’s Croma. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

The fledging retail sector in India will enter an expansion period and witness large-scale consolidation with increasing competition. (China Daily)

Indian retail sector to see fast expansion and consolidation

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Home Truths

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Large Indian retailers are using private labels to differentiate themselves from competition, but also to flex their muscles in their relationships with brand manufacturers.(Business Standard)

 
 
 

The textile industry has sought measures to boost exports of apparels and textile products in a cost-competitive market and easier access to funds for cotton buyers as it peaks in a year of global shortage. (Reuters)

Textile firms seek exports boost in budget

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Shoppers Stop’s new strategy

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Shoppers Stop (SSL) has topped the list of the Most Respected Companies in the retail category for the third year in a row. The company has been rated No. 1 by its peers in all categories except one. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Star Bazaar, the chain run by Tata-owned Trent Hypermarket, says it used the economic slowdown to book properties when prices were down, allowing it now to open more stores. (Business Standard)

Star Bazaar pats itself on slowdown strategy

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Britannia forays into breakfast mixes market

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FMCG major Britannia Industries has entered the Rs 5 billion branded breakfast space dominated by players like MTR Foods, Kellogg India, PepsiCo and Marico. (The Times of India)

 
 
 

Starbucks is finally coming to India. The world's largest premium coffee retail chain announced that it has entered into an agreement with Tata Coffee for a strategic alliance. (Business Standard)

Tata Coffee brings Starbucks to India

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Retail Outlook 2011 – the Year Ahead

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Retailers and mall operators in Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and India share their views and expectations for 2011. (Retail Asia)

 
 
 

Luxury retailers from across the globe are thronging India, where they see a huge potential for growth. However, they do have to tackle significant hurdles along the way. (Retailer)

Bumpy Road for Luxury Retail

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Biba split: new firm in the offing

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Bindra brothers split: Sanjay Bindra will sell his stake in an all-cash deal in Biba Apparels Pvt. Ltd; new firm in the offing. (MINT)

 
 
 

The regional markets in the country are dominated by the regional retailers. But national and international retailers are trying to get better of them and are now modifying their offerings to suit the regional tastes and preferences. (Retailer)

Streak of regional colour

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S Kumars goes in for branding rejig

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S Kumars now wants distinct segmentation for all its brands. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

There are strong arguments both in favour of and against the MRP (maximum retail price). Can we try giving retailers a chance to flex prices? (Indiaretailing.com)

Time's up for MRP?

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Walmart: Back To The Front

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In two years, the global retailer has built-up an impressive supply chain that no Indian retailer can match. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Airtel's brand is going to be visible on two different continents. The company believes a change in the logo signals its readiness to change. But do consumers agree? (The Economic Times)

Airtel's new logo comes in for criticism

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Britannia, Marico, PepsiCo spot a big opportunity

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Call it the breakfast war. The scramble to serve the first meal of the day is getting busier with companies such as Britannia, Marico, PepsiCo, Kellogg India and MTR Foods offering more and more options to meet Indian consumers' rising demand for quick-fix food. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

The Madras High Court’s order rejecting Subhiksha's merger proposition with Blue Green Constructions and Investment (BGCIL) has put a big question mark on the revival of the retail chain. (Businessworld)

Reverses On Revival Path

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A Brand New Story Everyday

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Shweta Iyer talks about the pros and cons of launching a new brand and tries to find a success mantra to survive in the industry. (StoRAI - magazine of the Retailers' Association of India)

 
 
 

After wooing customers with happy meals and extra-value meals, Big Mac has added breakfast to its menu, which it believes will keep the chain "ahead of competition". (Business Standard)

Big Mac's New Menu

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Woodland's eco drive

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Woodland, the outdoor shoe and apparel maker, wants eco-friendliness to become its brand recall. Here’s how it plans to grow. (Business Standard)

 
 
 

Indian beauty salon chains are looking to expand operations, offer cheaper services and increase the share of product sales in their earnings. (MINT - A Wall Street Journal Partner)

Indian beauty salon chains go on expansion spree

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The Hidden Cost

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Do Indian retailers underplay the expense on a promotion while assessing the success of a sale campaign? Is top line growth the only purpose of a promotional campaign? Do the numbers at retail justify the costs involved? These are burning questions that need to be addressed while assessing the efficacy of this oft-used tool. (Images Business of Fashion)

 
 
 

Everything was on the track until the very famous after-effect of worldwide recession hit the Indian retail industry. The blow was too hard for some, and some ducked the impact. (Retailer)

Sustaining the not so sustainable

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The Complete Coffee Experience

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Initially, stocking additional merchandise was treated to be a tool for branding but nowadays the same has managed to become a source of additional revenue. (Retailer)

 
 
 

As the competition heats up among shopping centres, what would differentiate one from the other? The answer lies in localisation of the shopping centre in line with local tastes and preferences. (indiaretailing.com)

Go local, not global

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Call of the Mall for Reluctant Shoppers

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Reluctant shoppers who used to drag themselves to the market even for that rare need-based shopping, don’t mind walking the clean corridors of some of the plush malls in town. (MINT - A Wall Street Journal Partner)

 
 
 

Back then, the sales were a much-awaited annual affair. Today, discount sales run all year round. Modern retail appears to be learning its lesson on right-pricing the hard way - the Indian consumer will go where the value is. (Daily News & Analysis)

Retailers step up discounts

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Club Couture

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'Couture equals bridalwear'- this perception is just the start of many a symptomatic issue that ails the Indian fashion sector. (Business India)

 
 
 

The latest catwalk designs, at affordable prices. That's Zara's promise. But to deliver that in India, it will have to tweak its centralized business model. (Forbes India)

Fast Fashion - Zara in India

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Wadhawan Shuts Spinach

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Wadhawan Retail has decided to shut its Spinach food and grocery stores. (The Economic Times)

 
 
 

India is warming up to fair trade. But the concept remains a niche market as companies are hesitant about taking it to the masses. (Forbes India)

Fairtrade in India

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Taking The High Road

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Foreign brands are lining up to enter the Indian market. Although many have positioned themselves as premium brands, most have become prudent enough to ensure that the prices are not beyond the reach of the Indian consumer. Indians are willing to pay more for foreign apparel brands. The brands themselves have lowered prices. And the resultant boom is attracting more players into India. (Outlook Business)

 
 
 

Customers visiting a store are looking for either the width of merchandise – the variety of product lines offered – or the depth – the number of each item or particular style of a product on offer. Which is more important? (IndiaRetailing)

Width or Depth - A Critical Choice

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Foreign Players in Indian Retail

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While multinational companies have preferred franchise models, more are now seeking joint ventures and greater control over their presence in India. (Span)

 
 
 

Jewellery retailers looking at malls need to focus on those that are consistent with their own product mix and standing. (interview to Retail Jeweller)

Growing Jewellery Retail Through Malls

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Textile Mills Ride Realty Boom

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India's top textile firms are generating additional revenue streams by developing or selling precious real estate as land rates rise in a buoyant economy.(Reuters)

 
 
 

Even the cautious are now convinced about the Indian recovery. The GDP projections are creeping up, production figures look good and, more importantly, demand is back. Organised retailers are heaving a sigh of relief with an uptick in sales after a bad year. But one group in the organised retail business is still not smiling: the mall owners. (Businessworld)

Malls - Surviving the Slump

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Policy Blow on Cash and Carry

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A change in rules may have put a pause on organised retail's expansion. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

The marketing mantra may sound incongruous outsibad year. But one group in the organised retail business is still not smiling: the mall owde a bar, but retailers from a range of sectors have started borrowing it to push sales in traditionally lean hours--betting that everyone loves discounts. (MINT)

Retailers turn to ‘happy hour’ discounts

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He wants more

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Thomas Varghese wants to take the Aditya Birla Group's retail chain "More" to the top by 2015. But he has to give it an identity first. (Businessworld)

 
 
 

Cigarettes to hotel major ITC entered the consumer products business in 2007. In three years, it has managed to corner a two per cent market share. The personal care sector holds immense appeal for ITC due to the category's size and growth potential. (Business Standard)

ITC tries to find its feet in personal care

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Won't need? Don't pay.

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Is it worth paying extra for feature-laden appliances or extended warranties? Not always. Find out why the price may not live up to the promise. (Money Today)

 
 
 

Retailers need to ascertain that the format, product assortment and the location of their store assures profits. How do exclusive branded outlets (EBO), shop-in-shop (SIS) and multi-brand outlets (MBO) compare as different channels? (Indiaretailing.com)

It's All About the Format

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Spinach withers in economic slowdown

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Grocery supermarket chain Spinach appears to be caught up in a slide that has seen a number of Indian retailers, particularly from low-margin food and grocery industry, down shutters in the wake of the economic slowdown. (MINT)

 
 
 

Aigner, the German luxury brand, and Genesis Luxury, the up-market retailing arm of Genesis Colors, have ended their tie-up in the country, as their plans did not go as expected. (Business Standard)

Another luxury partnership from abroad goes kaput

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Textile makers seek more funds for technology in Budget

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The textile industry had been battered by the economic slowdown for much of 2008/09 but has begun to recover in the past 2-3 quarters. But analysts said that the government needs to quicken disbursement of funds as there was no clarity on how soon a unit can receive the funds under TUFS, which is essentially a low interest-rate loan. (Reuters)

 
 
 

The second rung of retail players is shaking things up. But in a highly competitive market, smaller retail chains have cracks in their business models. Can they take the next leap? (Feature article from Businessworld, 23 January 2010)

Wild Cards

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Retailers mull new strategies for small stores

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Large retailers are trying to make their small food and grocery stores viable by trying out new ideas. While some like Reliance Retail are converting most of these stores into a deep- discount value format, RPG Group’s Spencer’s is looking at the franchising route.

 
 
 

As the New Year celebrations wear out sooner or later, bringing to the fore the harsh realities, the first thing that is likely to hit hard are the sharply rising food prices.

Hotter chillies, tangier tomatoes

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Global tie-ups, private labels to be buzzwords in retail this year

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Tie-ups with international retailers and brands, emphasis on profitable growth and increased focus on private labels are set to be key trends in the Indian retail sector in 2010, say retailers and consultants that Business Standard spoke to.

 
 
 

Parents continuously strive to do better for their children. They play an indelible role in shaping up the eating habits of their kids beginning at infancy. So when it comes the matter of feeding their toddlers, urban Indians (parents) typically are willing to go the extra mile in enhancing the nutrition quotient.

Nutrition Trust - No Child's Play

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High Cotton Prices Sour Rebound

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An unforeseen drop in global cotton output has seen prices flare, putting at risk the fragile recovery of India's textile industry that was battered by the global recession earlier in the year

 
 
 

"Rather than trying to fit the world to our business model, we need to fit the business model to the real world that exists," comments Devangshu Dutta, chief executive of Third Eyesight.

Customer-centric retailers roll the dice

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Zoozoo merchandise launched by Vodafone and Shopper's Stop

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They're egg-headed, have squeaky voices and formless pale bodies, but the viewers seemingly can't get enough of them. Vodafone's Zoozoos have now ventured into merchandise. The reason: public demand.

 
 
 

With retailers downsizing operations, many senior executives from fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and telecom who had jumped on the retail bandwagon a couple of years ago are making a quiet comeback

Retail dream fades for many FMCG, telecom executives

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Sustainable Fashion Forum

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Sustainability is a great concept like liberty - In three sessions, the panel of speakers tackled three key issues: What is Sustainable Fashion? Is Sustainable Fashion Profitable? Who Wants Sustainable Fashion?

 
 
 

The Indian call centre has become an international cliché. Its employees are young, educated, English-speaking and compared with their compatriots, well-off – and their disposable income, along with that of the rest of India’s fast-growing middle class, is driving extraordinary growth in the country’s consumer goods market.

Happy with home-grown

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Quickening Service

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Indian shopping hotspots are sporting more and more golden arches these days. If McDonald’s is expanding like never before, KFC is not far behind.

 
 
 

Normally, the performance of the market leader is a fair indicator of which way the wind is blowing in a sector, data from various retailers suggest that sales picked up slightly, but urban consumption could still be worrying.

Not Out Of The Woods

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Promises to keep

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Real estate is the largest component of cost for a modern retailer in India. At an average of 15 per cent of sales being paid out as rentals – compared to 2-3 per cent of sales in developedmarkets – just the retail space cost is enough to seriously dent a low-margin retailer’s bottomline. However, is reductionin rent the proverbial Final Solution?

 
 
 

The fast growth of digital media has amplified the potential of modern retailers to gain momentum in pushing brand building and consumption of their respective products among younger consumers. Opportunities in online brand building are particularly important to understand, given the tremendous pressure Indian retailers face in generating revenues robust enough to counter high operating costs.

Social Circuitry

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Seeking the right value

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A decade ago getting a branded footwear or apparel at 50 per cent discount gave rise to doubts in the minds of consumers. The stock was often comprised of store rejects and seconds. But this phenomenon has taken a complete turn with the terminology also being changed to value retailing.

 
 
 

Managing business poses many challenges to a retailer. Gross margin is only the starting point. A higher gross margin allows the retailer much more scope in deciding the operating costs. However, there are businesses with a high gross margin on products but slow inventory turn and high markdowns as well.

Gross Margin: How reflective is it?

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Getting the retail value chain right

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The consumer driven industry is feeling a dire need to streamline processes and optimise operational efficiencies. Industry experts are of the view that to fight back in this challenging environment, retail value chain can prove a handy tool for retailers to understand and identify performance improvements within the network while at the same time improving the customer experience in every store.

 
 
 

Gone are the days of basic satchels, canvas shoes and hand-me-down clothes from elder siblings. Retailers are finding new ways to create buying opportunities.

Retailers discover potential in the
‘back-to-school’ market

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Apparel retailers move into small towns for growth

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Skyrocketing rentals in big cities also makes moving to tier 2 and tier 3 cities attractive for apparel retailers.

 
 
 

After making their debut on television ads during the Indian Premier League earlier this year, the lovable egg-headed Zoozoos quickly made their way onto comic strips, newspaper mastheads, birthday cakes, wedding cards, shoes, T-shirts, key chains and even rakhis.

Zoozoo rakhis, anyone?

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Modern Food Retail: A tough balancing act

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The primary challenge in food retail, is its supply chain, which is making things difficult for retailers and food processors to procure quality produce at competitive costs directly from farmers in India.

 
 
 

Convenience and low prices are spurring an increasing number of Indians to purchase goods and services through the Internet. The innovations in securing online transactions are also fuelling the trend .

Just click to buy and save more

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Wholesale Hopes

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Cash-and-carry players are still betting big on India despite their poor show so far

 
 
 

Indications are that foreign investment in front-end retail will remain a distant dream

No Foreign Hand, For Now

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Neighbourhood stores go off the beaten track

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Modern retail is here in India to stay and growing but the friendly neighborhood stores are fighting back - and how.

 
 
 

It has been suggested that investing in innovation during a downturn helps retailers counter depressed consumer sentiments but a downturn also creates opportunities in the market and it may be the best time to invest in value marketing.

Survival of the fittest

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Homeware retailers change tack - Adopt new strategies to prop sales and cut losses

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Speciality home ware retail chains have changed tack as home sales drop and shoppers defer buying big-ticket items like furniture and furnishing to save cash in the downturn. To counter the slowing sales, retailers have adopted strategies to prop sales and cut losses.

 
 
 

The sustainability of any business depends - to a large degree - on loyal customers who come back again and again. A loyalty scheme can enable a retailer to not only to be in touch with its customers more regularly, but also to distinguish between customers and service the individual customers much better.

The Mystery of The Shopper

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RETAIL The Burden Of Debt

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Being an entrepreneur, Kishore Biyani is not shy of burning his fingers. Biyani took on a huge debt to expand Pantaloon Retail very quickly. Now the slowdown is making him rethink the Future Group's business plans and structure.

 
 
 

When the recession started in the second half of 2008, luxury retailers predicted that high-end brands would be immune as their target group would neither tighten their Chanel belts nor compromise on their lifestyles. Six months on, terms like recessionista and chicko-nomics are in and the Richie Rich club is shying away from luxury.

Cut-price couture

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Slowdown Spiking E-Tailing?

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Statistics gathered from eBay India reveal that one of the top-selling categories are jewellery and watches. Other hot categories are clothing and accessories, sporting goods, collectibles, home furnishings and musical instruments. These online shopping trends throw two big myths out of the window. One that the lack of the "touch and feel" factor is the biggest constraint in the path of e-commerce growth in India. And second, that only low value items peddle on the net.

 
 
 

Raheja-owned department al store chain Shoppers Stop Limited (SSL) is pulling out of unviable new ventures and shutting loss-making stores to conserve cash for the company in the ongoing economic downturn.

Shoppers Stop pulls out from unviable projects

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Against the grain

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Rice, which has long held the reputation of being the food of the masses, is witnessing a silent transformation in India. Things have come a long way from the “touch and feel” approach to purchasing rice by the weight to the modern era in which the busy urban Indian consumer is beginning to place his or her trust in branded and packaged rice.

 
 
 

The jewellery trade and industry has taken a hit. The global economic meltdown, the winds of recession, the slump in diamond and jewellery exports, massive lay-offs, closure of factories (SEEPZ, Surat), the volatile prices of gold and, most importantly, the dampened sentiment of the consuming class (especially for non-essentials like jewellery) have adversely impacted this sector.

What should Jewellers be doing next?

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Pantaloon sees second slowest sales growth in 5 years

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Pantaloon Retail's same-store sales in January grew at the second slowest pace in five years as consumers curbed spending and the retailer struggled to survive the downturn by offering discounts.The slow growth comes after the retailer's value and lifestyle same-store sales registered a negative growth in December.

 
 
 

Indian textile manufacturers have sought a two-year moratorium on repayment of term loans, withdrawal of excise duties on man-made fibres and waiver of service taxes on exports as well as taxes on textile machinery. The embattled textile industry, reeling under a slowdown in demand and high input costs, also seek to bring domestic cotton prices at par with international prices.

BUDGET VIEW
India textile makers seek loan repayment moratorium


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Bangladesh Pips India in Garment Exports

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For the first time, Bangladesh has garnered more market share than India in garment exports to the US, the largest importer of garments. Bangladesh has now taken the fifth position, which was previously occupied by India, in the list of largest garment-exporting countries to the US, pushing India to the sixth position.

 
 
  The exciting developments in India's dynamic, consumer-led retail sector and the export opportunities being created for British companies are the subjects of a conference to be staged by UK Trade & Investment's London International Trade Team on 27 January.
India's Retail Boom in the Export Spotlight

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Balm for the soul

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Growth in the smaller towns and rural markets can still be driven by penetration and improved availability levels of stock-keeping units. There are still vast swathes of consumers in India whose consumption of packaged skin and personal care products is negligible

 
 
  The history of catalogue retailing is interesting. What began out of necessity, soon developed into a channel offering convenience of shopping from home. With the trend of catalogue retailing yet to gain momentum in India, most retailers - still focussed on the brick and mortar format- are yet to fully exploit the true potential of the medium
Catalogue Retail in India – Work in Progress

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Retail Kiosk – Plug and Profit

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The Indian retail scenario has been witnessing significant advancement with traditional retail formats making way for more innovative and technologically evolved formats. One of the innovations to watch out for is the 'retail kiosk', which truly makes business sense for retailers because of its cost benefit structure at the ‘point of sale’ establishment process and ease and convenience for the customers too.

 
 
  Lack of an apex body, along with the absence of time-bound deadlines, are being cited as reasons behind the poor implementation of the scheme for integrated textile parks (SITPs), which is the textile ministry's flagship scheme, according to industry experts.
Textile parks scheme hit by slow execution

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Textile firms battle global slump despite rupee fall
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Textile companies may not benefit much from the rupee's weakness as a slump in global demand and prior currency hedges trim bottomlines in an industry dominated by exports. However, the global credit crisis, which triggered the rupee's fall in the first place, is also leading to slump in global textile demand.

 
 
  The global financial crisis has undermined the viability of India’s textile and clothing players’ business, The textile industry is one of the few industries in India that are export weighted and the global turmoil can cause a deep dent into it.
Global Crisis Could Badly Hit Indian Textile Industry

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The Indian Retail Market

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A perspective on the Indian retail market, the growth path followed in the past, views on the evolution path it could take, the opportunities as well as the challenges that need to be address. (Chapter 1 from the India Retail Report 2009)

 
 
  A report by Third Eyesight, has called upon the Indian textile and apparel industry to urgently develop capabilities to capture the value being lost due to inadequate focus on product development and downstream products.

Eternal Hope to Reality

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Building the Safety Net

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In a departure from popular retail philosophy, the author calls for a new model of food supply based on multiplicity and diversity. Modern retail must take into account the changing environment and be sensitive to evolving consumer preferences. (By Devangshu Dutta)

 
 
  Private Equity (PE) investment in India is on the rise, commensurate with global interest in the booming Indian economy. However, big ticket PE investments have not really come the retail way. In the times to come, is there a possibility of big time PE investment in the retail sector?
Private Interests

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Don’t standardise…visualise!

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Food and grocery retailers are leaving no stone unturned to gain the loyalty of the spoilt-for-choice consumers. One bad experience and poof! The loyal shopper is gone for good. Not only does this imply assuring good shopping experience every time a consumer enters a store, but also retain them by ensuring an impressive visual treat for them. You get only one chance to create the first impression. This impression would either create a happy loyal shopper or would eliminate their chance of ever stepping into the store again. A store that projects a differentiated image and branding definitely gains in the long term.

 
 
 

Indian fashion has true potential to grow exponentially in the next decade. But before that, there are many issues that the creators and producers of fashion need to address.

Quo Vadis fashion industry?

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Strapless

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In 2004, Oswal group forayed into innerwear business under the brand of 'Sensa' with a view to cater to the growing ready-to-wear fashion apparel market. Thereafter, the company renamed its retail innerwear business as 'Straps', offering lingerie, nightwear and maternity wear in 2006. And finally in 2008; Oswal Retail decided to wind up its innerwear business and close down its 22 exclusive outlets of 'Straps'.

 
 
 

Since India bars overseas investments in a retail venture selling multi-branded products to consumers, the two foreign funds have invested in MedPlus’ wholesale arm.

Foreign venture cos fund medical retail chain’s back-end business

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Retailers tighten purse strings amid economic slowdown

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As costs rise and economic growth slows, Indian retailers are looking at ways to trim expenses and protect their profits. “Unlike mom-and-pop stores, large retail formats have much higher cost obligations,” said Devangshu Dutta, chief executive of retail consultancy firm Third Eyesight. “Organizations with larger cost heads will be first to get hit in case of a slowdown.”

 
 
 

Many retailers, saddled with excessive inventory and caught flat-footed by optimistic sales forecasts, have had to launch early "end-of-season" sales this year and the more innovative ones are trying to stand out in that deep discount clutter. The midnight-sale by Spykar has become one of the many retail innovations that stores are using to get more shoppers into their stores. And, much like a "happy hour" in a bar, retailers are offering steep discounts during such "off" hours or on certain days when foot traffic is normally slow.

Retailers cross other side of midnight

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Third Eyesight Knowledge Series©

Textiles Workshop

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The apparel and textile industry has grown and matured a lot over the last few years - from an unorganized to an organized sector. However, this in turn has increased the need for constant improvement and upgradation of knowledge and skills. An update on a workshop conducted by Third Eyesight.

 
 
  Senior executive's outlook towards supply chain tends to differ considerably from that of supply chain manager's. While SCM professionals concerns are usually operational and immediate in nature, senior executives prefer looking at the slightly distant supply chain objectives. The increasing realization of supply chain's strategic relevance is prompting senior executives to increase their involvement in the supply chain affairs of the organization albeit at a macro level.

Logistics Management - Executive Involvement

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URBAN LEGENDS OR LEGACIES?

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Many people l know treat shopping centres or malls as a new phenomenon, a progressive development of recent times, or a modern blot on the traditional cityscape (depending on your point of view). Lest one forgets, Grand Bazaar (lstanbul, Turkey) is the earliest known mall, with the original structures built in 1464,with additions and embellishments later.

 
 
 

India has 267 million mobile phones. And the market is growing at the rate of five million phones per month. As a result, companies are quite busy leveraging the medium.

Mobile Marketing

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Logistics Management - Supply Chain Strategies

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Quite a few companies have realized the importance of developing distinct supply chain strategies that are aligned with business strategies. This helps them capture cross-enterprise opportunities that not only generate cost and capital efficiencies, but also help drive top-line opportunities. However, in India the idea of letting the supply chain enter the corporate boardroom still seems somewhat alien to many.

 
 
 

India has literally millions of individuals who would prefer to be their own boss and run a business, rather than being an employee. There are joint families, where resources may be available in the form of some real estate and family members who can be part of the business. Personal loans are available from family and friends, in the close social fabric of our communities. This is ideal ground for franchising,” says Devangshu Dutta, chief executive, Third Eyesight, a consulting firm focused on the retail and consumer products sector.

Profit From Franchising

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Shopper's Stop targets younger buyers with Rs 20 crore brand revamp

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Shopper's Stop Ltd, the 24-store retail chain, got a new look at a glitzy function featuring actor Shah Rukh Khan, nightclub lighting and hundreds of saplings that will be planted as part of the stores' Rs. 20 crore (Rs. 200 million) rebranding exercise. The chain, which started in a defunct suburban Mumbai movie theatre in 1991, got itself a new black-and-white logo, uniforms, print and television campaigns, carry bags and even an anthem and an in-store radio channel. It will also launch an Internet shopping platform along with a Think Green campaign.

 
 
 

Indian retailers are a worried lot these days. There has been a decline in margins and it's one of the lowest ever, according to some retailers. As inflation touched a 41-month high, chains across the country, especially the smaller players, have been trying every trick in the book to attract consumers, and keep them coming in, even as they struggle to grow profitably. (From The Economic Times)

Inflation Hurting Retailers Margins

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Family-run restaurants look to malls

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The growth of organized retail has brought both expansion opportunities and growth pangs for India's traditional, stand-alone, family-owned restaurants. They have emerged as magnets in malls where as many as 80% visitors to a mall may go to food courts compared with about 65% who visit hypermarkets and 50-55% who go to department stores, according to estimates by the Retailers Association of India.

 
 
 

To tap the growth in the retail market in India, major players such as Future Group, Reliance Industries Ltd, Tata Group, Aditya Birla Group, K Raheja Corp., and Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd have announced mega investments in the sector. The success of these plans, however, depends on the response of the Indian consumer to the organized retail format. (From MINT )

Brand Behaviour

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Small Towns, Big Gains

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Small is the new big. Small towns, that is. With demand nearly peaking in larger cities, companies are realising that there are plenty of untapped opportunities in the next level. And if you are small yourself, it could be the perfect alternative to taking your bigger competitors head-on or waiting until you are big enough. (From The Economic Times )

 
 
 

Surviving the textile meltdown won’t be easy. Unlike the Indian IT industry, other countries in East Asia can offer a real alternative to India. Only if Indian firms can differentiate, invest in machinery that can help them raise productivity and improve speed to market can they compete. (From The Economic Times )

The Collared, the Cuffed and the Chuffed

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Sport - Enough to wear?

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What do you understand by sportswear? Is it casualwear? How different is it from activewear? Who are the main players in sportswear? Any desi brands here? What are the opportunities in this segment? Chhaya Chauhan answers these questions and more

 
 
 

The shelves of Food Bazaar are stacked with well-known brands such as Britannia, Tropicana and Heinz. Sharing the shelves with them are obscure brands like Lancer biscuits, Fruitfil juices and Chintamani snacks.

Smaller Brands Jostle with Elite Goods

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Executive Q&A - American Shipper Namaste

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Namaste spoke with Third Eyesight about a range of retail supply chain topics including why retail can sometimes be a dirty word in India, and why India's roads might not be as bad as you might have heard.

 
 
 

lt is quite clear that retro is in. The movie business worldwide is full of sequels, prequels, re-releases and remakes. The music business is ringing up the cash registers with remixes and jukebox compilations. Star Wars and Sholay still have a fan following. Abba has leaped across three decades; Hindi by American hip-hop artists; while Pink Floyd is hot with lndian teens, along with Akon and Rihanna.

A Brands Life - Of Immortality and Reincarnation

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A Discount By Another Name

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Discounting off full-price is prevalent in the Indian market, and now there is the emergence of retail stores that are focussed on discounting as their unique selling proposition. The Financial Express asked Devangshu Dutta for his views on this phenomenon.

 
 
 

India's Finance Minister P Chidambaram recently put the government's estimate of the retail trade in the country at US$300 billion. The apparel retail market is about 6 % of the overall market - valued at $ 16-17 bn and growing at around 10-12% per annum. Also, apparel has among the highest percentage of organised retail at nearly 14%, which is second only to footwear, which has around 35% of organised retail. The question whether retail is a good option for garment exporters at this juncture is not as simple as it seems and many would nod in the affirmative, but the road is long and tedious, and requires among other things, the right product, a good location and more importantly, deep pockets, to make even a dent into the retail market.

Critical Indicators For India's Retail Sector

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Retail: A Barometer of Urban Health

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During India's misplaced years post-Independence, business and commercial activity was treated as a "necessary evil". In the last 20 or so years, fortunately, that tide has turned significantly - the role of business in economic and social growth is publicly acknowledged. It is time now for retail developments to be seen as part of urban infrastructure and also, more importantly, as part of the social fabric of a town or city. Government at all levels, especially state, district and municipal level, need to understand that the presence of successful retail developments in their population centres are an indication of the social and economic health of their localities.

 
 
With the sector expected to create at least 2mn direct jobs in 5 years, there is a rash of grooming courses. As several companies roll out hundreds of branded stores, retailers say they have turned the corner in their ability to make the sector respectable from the employment point of view. Many parents are beginning to encourage their sons and daughters to look for a career in retail to cash in on the expected boom.

Retail Jobs Attain Respectability Amid Rush for Branded Stores

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Weapons of Mass Dialogue

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We are surely not the first to wonder why, after millennia of physiological evolution, societies around the world are still stuck in the same, predictable response: where disagreement (on an issue) translates into disapproval (of a person), more often than not leading to conflict that is frequently violent. The need to accept differences and the use of democratic dialogue as a process to close the gap is the basis of Arun Maira’s Discordant Democrats. (Book Review)

 
 
 
The imminent entry of the world's largest retailer into India may herald a new era of retailing. Then again, there are enough of those who think that the mega-retailer's presence will not be beneficial. Of course, Wal-Mart's entry into India cannot be taken out of the context of the retail boom in India, that was underway whether the Walton empire spread to India or not.

Wal-Mart changes the game in India

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Farm Retail - The New Middleman

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The retail boom is setting the stage for a horticulture revolution in the country as major companies scour the farms for quality supplies of fresh food. A small but significant shift in buying patterns offers a clue as to why the biggest names in corporate India, from Reliance Industries (RIL), the oil and petrochemicals behemoth, and the AV Birla group to the Mittals of telecom fame, Pantaloon Retail and RPG group to a host of smaller players have jumped into retailing of fresh vegetables and fruits along with other groceries.

 
 
 

Indian apparel and accessories designers have made their mark on the fashion high streets of the world, turning in thousands of trendy designs in a season. (From Outlook Business, 20 June 2007 - cover story)

Draping the world

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India's Retail Revolution Begins

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Recent news tells a fascinating story: Reliance Retail is to invest US$5.5 billion by 2010-2011, to create 100 million sq ft of retail space. Bharti-Wal-Mart is to invest US$2.5 billion by 2015, to create 10 million sq ft of retail space. Future Group (Pantaloon Retail) will invest US$260 million by 2008, to increase its retail space to 10 million sq ft. Subhiksha, the US$73 million discount store will set up 1,000 stores in India by the year end, while Metro AG is investing US$400 million over the next three years to set up some 18 stores in the country. With long-term experience in modern supply chains and provisioning, Hong Kong firms in the food and related products sectors are sure to be viewing the changing Indian retail scene with more than passing curiosity. Others, like ACM China, the greenhouse specialist, are already getting involved.

 
 
 

Just a decade ago, it might have been hard to imagine that the take-out food of choice for millions of Indians would be a baked good of Italian origin. But since then, calling for a pizza has become quite the urban ritual. Like most consumer brand successes, pizza has been customised for the Indian market, from its toppings to its delivery models.

Pie in the Sky

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Prime Source Forum (Hong Kong) - March 2007

Report 1  and Report 2

Prime Source Forum in March 2007 played host to some 320 delegates from 23 countries. They heard, shared experiences and networked with 37 speakers - all leaders of the global textile and apparel industry.

 
 
 

Weekend temping is the new passport for retailers to tide over footfall pressure during the weekends. As families make a beeline for high streets and malls during the weekends, the normal workforce looks helpless. Heavyweight retailers who see a sudden spike in footfalls over the weekends, are roping in agencies for outsourcing manpower for that short one-to-two-day duration.

Retailers rush to TEMPerate zone

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Fad In, Fad Out

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One outcome of the global information exchange is that Indian customers now see hardly any lag before a fad that takes shape in another country reaches India. Also, the lifecycle of fads is shortening in India, as in other markets. How are marketers reacting to this new reality? (From Brand Equity, a supplement of The Economic Times)

 
 
 

Bharti Enterprises, the parent of India's best selling wireless service provider Airtel, confirmed that it will invest up to $2.5 billion (Rs. 11,026 crores) in the next eight years to roll out convenience stores and hypermarkets nationwide, joining a raft of companies looking to profit from an expected boom in organised retailing.

Bharti to Invest $2.5 Billion

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More Opportunities to Shop 24/7

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Targeting an emerging segment of night shoppers, New Delhi-based round-the-clock convenience chain Twenty Four Seven Retail Stores Pvt. Ltd plans to invest Rs 880 crore (US$200 million) in opening 1,000 outlets in the next five years, in a country where even late markets shut by midnight.

 
 
 

Since the most recent "mall boom" that began in 1999, with the launch of Ansal's Plaza in Delhi and Crossroads in Mumbai, much has been written and said about organised retail, the growth of the middle class, and virtually every alternate person you meet professes to be an expert in retail. What is not acknowledged is the fact that fashion retail began to get modernised many decades ago.

Fashion at the Forefront of Modern Retail

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Slicing the Market

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Gut instincts and home-grown wisdom can often seem more successful than planning through facts and figures. This is partly a function of India's complexity as a country and as a market. As markets worldwide become more blurred, the artifical construct of segmentation becomes difficult to work with. The Indian market just takes this complexity to a new plane.

 
 
 

Indian philosophy, thousands of years ago, presented a balanced view of human life. While this was distorted post-independence until the 1990s, in recent years it seems to be swinging to the other extreme. An opinion piece based on a presentation made at the CII National Retail Summit, November 2006.

The Consumption Game

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Demographic Changes to Drive Retail

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Research by retailers, research organisations and consulting firms highlights the demographic changes taking place in India, and the need for retailers and brands to draw up appropriate strategies.

 
 
 

About 450 million individuals in India are estimated to be below 20 years of age. 105 million individuals are in the age group of 15-19 years, already in their early years of discretionary consumption. About 112 million individuals are in the 10-14 years segment – within 5 years many of these will be making career choices, and in another 5 years most would have already begun earning and spending. Imagine the power of the tweens and the teens. Devangshu Dutta's column from The Economic Times.

Chasing Youth

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Sisley Breaks Into the Indian Market

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Benetton brand Sisley has entered the Indian market with a store in capital New Delhi. The store, which is almost 400-sq-m big, contains Sisley women's and men's clothing collections plus accessories ranges.

 
 
  The retail boom has sent the aspirations of small regional retailers soaring. Small retailers are finally showing appetite for external investors and willingness to share ownership, and scores of terms sheets and investment seeking proposals are floating in the market..
Everyone Wants a Slice of Retail

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The CHINDIA Equation
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China and India. India versus China. China or India. The relationship between the two ancient civilisations and behemoth countries has been
viewed under different lights. Particularly in recent years, as these two
neighbours – home to nearly two-fifths of the world’s population – seemingly chase each other around the global economic circuit. Yet, as government and business leaders on both sides of the Himalayas insist, it is not a race, nor is there a definitive finish line. They prefer to raise and realise mutual benefits in an era of simultaneous and parallel development.

 
 
 

Though the mall mania of the last few years indicates a change in shopping patterns, the wild exuberance in retail expectations may be misplaced and the real revolution is still waiting to happen. Devangshu Dutta narrows the lens.

Myth and Reality of the Retail Revolution
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VF's Passage To India

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With many battle-scars earned over many brands and several years, and around $40m in annual sales, American apparel giant VF Corporation seems like a veteran in the Indian market. Its story so far - including a newly announced joint venture with Arvind_brands - gives credence to the Indian philosophy of reincarnation.

 
 
 

Goa, once a haven for holidaymakers looking for a break, is now set to zoom up top retailers' charts. The union territory will soon see an influx of major brands, with real estate giants. (From Times News Network)

Land Prices in Goa to Zoom

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McKinsey To Shape Birla' Retail Plans

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Consulting companies are supporting the growth of Indian corporate houses in growing organised retail businesses in the country. (From The Economic Times)

 
 
 

For a man from Dehradun who ran a family-owned bookstore called English Book Depot, it's been quite a journey to the point where his Book Café chain now has tie-ups with retailers like Café Coffee Day, Nirula's, Barista and Subway. Sandeep Dutt, who's effectively used co-branding and co-location strategic tie-ups to set up a 20-store book retail chain, says, "We are in the business of brewing knowledge." (From The Economic Times)

Brewing Knowledge

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Time to Take Off the Blinkers

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Many business plans for the Indian market mention the "200-300 million middle class". However, most brands end up being targeted only at 15-20 million individuals. Devangshu Dutta delves deeper from his previous column about "the missing millions" in the Financial Express

 
 
 

Surely, with FDI opening up gradually, foreign retailers would want to set up joint ventures in which they have control, rather than go through the franchise route, where their brand is "at the mercy of another company". So does FDI sounds the death knell for franchising in India? In a Guest Column in the Financial Express, Devangshu Dutta says that jumping to that conclusion would be to ignore the fundamentals of franchising as a business.

Franchising : A Consistent Growth Platform

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The Case of the Missing Millions

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Foreign companies' first attraction to India is the billion-plus population. Brands from countries which have domestic populations of 50-300 million salivate at the prospect of 1.2 billion Indians starving for their particular make of biscuit or coffee or the latest backless cropped blouse. The thinking goes, "If we can capture even 2% of the market to start with…" So what is the real story? Devangshu Dutta explores in his column in the Financial Express.

 
 
 

Most consumer, product-supply chains have evolved into fairly complex chains for two main reasons. Firstly, despite all the talk about removing intermediaries, there are still many people involved in the entire supply chain at different levels — for no reason but that they do add some value in the steps they are handling. Whether this is breaking of bulk, or handling of disparate products, shipping or storing goods, or providing bridge finance, each intermediary is in the chain because he has a role to play.

Using IT in the Retail Supply Chain
(Case Study Analysis)


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The Fast Fashion Risk for Slow Retailers

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Fast fashion represents only one percent of all U.S. clothing sales compared to 18 percent in Spain and 12 percent in the British market. Today, Zara has only 19 of its 1,200 stores in the U.S., leaving it plenty of room for growth. Should other retailers be worried?

 
 
 

Discounts are the bane of brands. Achieving as much as 40-70% of the total annual sales turnover in one or two discount sales is not a recipe for long-term business success. We seem to be caught in a vicious cycle of low sales in season and mad traffic during end-of-season discount events. So what is the way out? Devangshu Dutta discusses in his column in the Financial Express.

Deal Ya No Deal: The Story So Far

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Tier II Cities Are The New Money Spinners

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The presence of Tier-II cities on the growth map of leading retailers has been on the rise in recent months. While sales are growing by 50-60%, albeit on a lower base, leading retailers say that volumes have been significant enough to encourage them to pan out quickly to other similar markets.

 
 
  Now that direct investment into India is on the verge of opening up, the country could hold increased opportunities for clothing companies who want to source and sell fashion there. Rebecca Danton reports from a recent conference on "Sourcing And Selling Fashion In India" where speakers discussed the advantages and disadvantages of setting up and trading within India. (From just-style.com)
Foreign Investors Have India in Their Sights

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Leap of Faith
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When the World Trade Organisation (WTO) brought about the abolishment of quota restrictions on textile and clothing exporting countries, Indian garment companies were swept aside by Chinese competitors who had already built huge factories with a view to capture the global market. For the relatively smaller Indian companies, playing catch-up seemed a distant possibility. However, with global buyers now looking to de-risk their sourcing, Indian textile majors are aiming to caputure lost ground and are investing in large garment units. This will give them a fair chance against larger Chinese rivals, says T. Surendar.

From The Times of India (Mumbai Edition) (November 8, 2005)

 

 
 
 

The suburbs go shopping on weekends and the trend is set to grow. However, this skew is highlighting serious planning and infrastructure constraints. Malls must learn how to handle the crowds, find Namrata Singh and Aradhana Takhtani.

From The Times of India (Mumbai Edition) (November 5, 2005)

 

Weekend Rush Blues
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The perishable food chain In India - opportunities and issues

Go to just-food.com

India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and one of the largest in terms of Purchasing Power Parity. Global brands are re-starting the hype of a decade ago, as they envisage how to take advantage of the massive population and rapidly growing income and consumption to create new business streams, sales and profits. But several challenges remain before companies can grab the big prize in India – fragmented chains, poor infrastructure plus policy and regulation issues make it difficult for retailers to make their move. However, things are improving as the Indian government start to make effective and coherent efforts to bring about change in the perishables supply chain. So can such strong potential progress to significant business opportunities? This briefing, by Devangshu Dutta, looks at consumer opportunity, the retail structure, emerging developments, and addressing the risks and challenges involved in the Indian market.

PDF File can be downloaded from

 
 
 

India is one of the world’s oldest major textile exporters and was once by far the largest. However, when quota-restrictions slammed shut the gates to free trade, the country’s exports were accordingly channelled and fragmented. Preferential trade arrangements placed further constraints, as both the US and the EU provided duty-free and quota-free access to selected countries. As a result, India now has just over 3% of the global trade in apparel – but despite its low share, it still remains among the Top 10 exporters of textiles and clothing in the world. This briefing aims to present a general guide to the industry in India, including its scope, skills and recent developments. The study also looks at investments by the industry and government support whilst discussing any potential pitfalls that buyers should watch out for. After the removal of quotas, India is now expected to grow its share of the global marketplace but does it have the stamina to catch up with China?

A perspective on the opportunities, presented by Devangshu Dutta.

PDF File can be downloaded from

 

India apparel industry review - Looking ahead

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Playing with the Big Boys
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It was not too long ago that the retail market was full of a diverse group of small players selling goods to you and me, in an environment that was comfortable and familiar. Then one fine day retailing got organised...

 
 
  Business managers usually look for one winning strategy, one benchmark company that shows superlative performance, and then proceed to copy that strategy in hordes, whether it is Wal-Mart’s everyday low pricing, Gap’s basics or Zara’s fast fashion business. They jerk from one strategy to another, and end up with indifferent results. How can one pick an appropriate and winning strategy for one's individual business? Here are some guidelines
Lifecycle-Led Strategies
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The Indian Consumer - A Do-It-Yourself Segmentation Kit

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India has the youngest population profile among the numerically significant countries, with a lot of young people in different income segments and locations who are influencing their parents' money, or spending their own. On the other hand, many farmers have unquestionably grown beyond being "rural" in the traditional sense. Are we even comprehending, let alone capitalising, on these changes?

 
 
 

Durables retailers are dreaming bigger than ever before. With size comes power. And higher costs. Durables manufacturers are finding this out as they negotiate with the new durables retail chains. Will these chains go the American way or the European? Aarti Kothari explores.

Durables Retailing - Chain Gains
Cover Story from BusinessWorld

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Floor Ready Merchandise (A Report)

Go to just-style.com

In basic terms, “floor-ready merchandise” refers to merchandise that is pre-ticketed and pre-tagged with all the details that are required in the retail store – before it reaches the store. The merchandise can also be packaged, or hung on hangers if required, in the same form as it would be displayed in-store. It can also include security tags that protect it from theft. This report, authored by Devangshu Dutta, discusses the development of floor-ready merchandise practices and processes, and how they might impact retail and supplier organisations.

PDF File can be downloaded from

 
 
 

In 2005 pay packets of Indians increased more than workers in the rest of Asia. What does it mean for consumer spending, what is the implication for the retail sector, and how should we view the developing boom in shopping malls in India?

Rising Incomes and Spending: The Impact on Retail
Television Interview from NDTV Profit (transcript)

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The Man They Wrote Off
Cover Story from BusinessWorld

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Two years ago, according to BusinessWorld principal correspondent M. Rajshekhar, Biyani wouldn't get invited to industry get-togethers because he wasn't regarded as a serious player. There should be no doubts about his seriousness now. In two years, Kishore Biyani has bounced back to become India's largest retailer. With Rs. 650 crore in sales and with 1.1 million sq. feet of shopping space, Biyani is all set to ride the retail growth wave. The only question is this: can Biyani create a professional organisation that can manage the growth? The early signals are good, says Rajshekhar who wrote the story.

 
 
 

With just months to go before MFA quotas are phased out, the industry in India is buzzing with activity. However, amidst this development, challenges and fears also remain. Devangshu Dutta provides a ring-side view of the opportunities - and problems - facing the industry. (Article written in April 2004)

India; Facing Up to 2005

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Images Fashion Forum - Special Feature

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A world of opportunities for brands, realtors and retailers – that's what finally emerged out of the seminars, discussions and displays at the event-packed Images Fashion Forum 2004 in New Delhi.. Some 2,000 head honchos from across the globe converged there to ponder upon, and prepare the roadmap for the future of retail in India.

 
 
 

The two most aspirational brands, both examples of efficiency and growth, Zara of Spain and Giordano of Hong Kong made a special appearance at the Images Fashion Forum in discussions on their brand values and supply chains.

IFF brand watch on Zara & Giordano

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Comments from IMAGES on the "State of Indian Retailing"

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Retailing in India is set for the next big leap. The availability of quality real estate in the form of shopping malls is probably the biggest enabler of the organisation of retail business. Yet, several major challenges remain.

 
 
  Consider this: through the 1990s, organised retail in India added just 1 million sq. ft. of space a year. The pace picked up from 2001 onwards. But estimates have it that in 2003 alone, a breathtaking 10 million sq. ft. was picked up by this fledgling industry. If you thought that was heady, think again. The most exciting phase for the retail industry lies ahead. The warm-up over, India's retail industry is revving up for its most exciting phase ever. (From BusinessWorld, Issue of 16 February 2004 )

Gentlemen, Fasten Your Seatbelts
(Indian Retail 2004)

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Brand Watch - Zara

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Zara offers clear lessons for companies looking to improve their fashionability index with the consumer as well as their supply chain efficiency. (A presentation made at the IMAGES Fashion Forum, February 2004.) Also see the feature length articles below.

 
 
  The foreign brands' boom in India never really happened. One can blame it, among many other reasons, on the investment magnet of the world, China, which has simply sucked up a large portion of the investments made in Asia. However, there are a number of internal drivers as well, and the Indian industry can be a formidable competitor, if it only decides to wake up.

India, Outside In

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Retail - An Engine for Economic Growth

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Retailing is the latest buzzword among the Indian businesses. The new "fad" is getting a lot of high visibility media coverage. Even without this coverage the retail business influences each of our lives. A look at how the retail business is moving forward in India. (A 2003 reprint of an article originally published in 1999.)

 
 
  Despite over US$ 6 billion of exports and around US$ 8 billion of domestic market volumes, the ready-to-wear apparel industry in India is dominated by small-scale companies. E-enablement provides the fragmented industry a fighting chance.
Responsive and Profitable Apparel Business

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Retail @ The Speed of Fashion: Case Study

Read Part I in PDF format and Read Part II in PDF format

Zara is riding two of the winning retail trends - being in fashion and low prices - and making a very effective combination out of it. Here's the quick-n-dirty on Zara's recipe for growth.

 
 
  The Indian textile and apparel industry is very large and diverse, employing 35 million people and accounting for 27 per cent of the country's exports. In the first instalment of this two-part feature, Devangshu Dutta presents an overview of the industry, and argues that its diversity is also one of its main weaknesses. In the second part, Devangshu Dutta outlines the opportunities for sourcing companies, consumer brands, suppliers and investors to form profitable partnerships with the industry.
Insight into India
Based on a presentation
at Interstoff-Asia Spring 2003


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Zodiac - A Winner by Design

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Walk into high-fashion clothing chain Bijenkorf's outlet in Krasnapolski Square in Amsterdam's main shopping district and tick off the shirt brands on display. Armani, Hugo Boss, Calvin Klein, Zodiac,... Zodiac? Doesn't quite gel here, does it? Bijenkorf does not think so. Read about how Indian garment maker Zodiac broke into the world of high fashion in Europe

 
 
 

The story of rise and fall could well be playing out across India's major high streets, which have dominated the retail sector for several decades.With each of their annual turnovers anywhere between Rs 500 crore and Rs 2,500 crore, these bustling high streets determine the fortunes of several Indian enterprises

Twilight Zone - Requiem for the High Streets?
Article from Businessworld

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The Show must go on - SARS - Interstoff Asia

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In the throes of two wars - Conflict in Iraq and the fight against SARS - Interstoff Asia went without a hitch although, understandably, attendance was affected , with a 25 per cent drop against last spring's show.

 
 
  By joining forces, the textile and apparel industries on the subcontinent can withstand strong competition and sustain growth.
Riding on the regional strength

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Reverse Auction -
Will it Change the Way Sourcing is Done?


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In their frantic efforts to reduce cost to attract and retain customers, retailers / buyers have now adopted a new way to source - through reverse auction. Reverse auctions involve bidding for orders - such as for a new type of product that a retailer needs produced to its specifications. Apparel Online discussed this new phenomenon on the future of this alternative.

 
 
  Companies are giving importance to the reverse supply chain. What benefits can companies get from the reverse supply chain? To earn maximum profits from the reverse supply chain, what activities should companies pay attention to when implementing reverse supply chain?

Roundtable Discussion: Reverse Supply Chain
ICFAI Press - Effective Executive,
January 2003


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How Efficient is Your Reverse Supply Chain?
Effective Executive, January 2003

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Companies spend more time and money in fine-tuning their forward supply chains while ignoring their backward supply chains. However, in today's competitive business environment, companies can no longer ignore reverse supply chains.

 
 
  Effective supply chain management must work backwards from the customer needs in mind. Adopting this approach can enable companies to add financial and business value not only in the long term but sometimes immediately.
Measure Your Supply Chain Performance

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Strengthening Textile Ties
( Press Quote from The Irish News. )

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Supply chain management in the ultra-competitive textiles and apparel markets is the theme for the 'Strongest Link' conference at Belfast's W5.

 
 
  Know how B2B are changing the e-commerce landscape, understand the intricacies in B2B strategies and be aware of what organizations should do to succeed in the marketplace
W(h)ither B2Bs?
(Press Quote from CIO)


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The Brave New (Old) World

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Over the past few years, the Internet has been revolutionising the way we interact with each other, as individuals, as companies or corporate entities, providing a mass of information keeps growing with no end in sight. Surely, as many pundits forecast, the Internet should bring an end to intermediation of any sort. Well, yes. And no.  
 
 

Linda Cahan researches and reports on how renovations impact retail businesses.

The Power Of Renovations
(Press Quotes )


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Developing Customer Loyalty

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Do loyalty programs work or don't they? The answer is that some programs work and some don't. The difference is in how core operations are fine-tuned from the information collected from the loyalty program.

 
 
  This is a brief note to share an impromptu impression (and some anguish) about our apparel exports that came up after reading a magazine article recently.
Indian exports in 2005: One of the seven missing wonders?

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Speed, Connectivity and Value-Creating Intangibles
(Quotes from Editorial of Textile Outlook International, Nov. 2001.)

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Three forces, also called the 'trinity' of the blur -speed, connectivity and intangibles- are setting the new rules of doing business! What could they mean for the garment sector and especially for the sourcing activity?

 
 
  The sourcing principles followed by many apparel organisations seem to be governed by apathy. Once supply relationships have been defined, it often becomes a struggle to change them. Yet keeping the supply base refreshed is probably one of the single most important functions that a buyer can perform.
Supply Base Consolidation: A Step Too Far?

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Unzipping Garments
(Press Quotes from Business World)

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Opening up the garments sector in India will revive the textile industry but only if some laws change.

 
 
  Sourcing is seldom a straightforward and simple process. With all the unpredictables, is the sourcing process a gamble? How do you build a framework for an intelligent and structured sourcing strategy?
Relating Sourcing to Global Trends

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Integrating Sourcing Within Your Business Strategy

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In recent years, sourcing and supply management has emerged as one of the greatest opportunity areas for retail business as well as for suppliers to leading retailers. At the same time, it is possibly also the one most prone to risk. One must ensure that sourcing is well and truly integrated within their overall business strategy.

 
 
 
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