Kamath, Business Standard
Mumbai, 16 February 2017
fashion chains are betting big on the consumption story here as
American chains shut stores, amid competition from online retailers.
the largest department store chain in the US, said it was closing 68
stores. Sears will also close 42 stores. Kmart is closing 108 stores
and and discount chain Kohl’s has closed 18 stores, according to
Indian chains are scripting a different story, despite
a strong online retail presence. Future Group-owned Central plans to
add 15 new Central HD stores. Central HD has upgraded their décor and
has minimalistic fixtures with an aspirational fashion boutique feel.
store is designed to offer an enhanced and more customised service to
shoppers,” said Vishnu Prasad, chief executive officer, Central. “We
have received great response with the new Central HD. We are expecting
15-20 per cent like-to-like growth.”
Shoppers Stop, the
country’s largest department store chain, is planning to open four new
stores this year and is working on a 35,000 sq ft format for smaller
cities, against the average size of 45,000 sq ft. “The new stores have
designated shop-in-shops for private brands to provide a luxe
experience,” said Govind Shrikhande, managing director, Shoppers
Stop. “We are targeting seven-eight per cent like-to-like growth
in the department store segment.”
Max, Landmark Group’s value
fashion chain plans to open 40-45 stores at an investment of Rs 5 crore
each. These stores have the latest retail identity as in their home
market of Dubai with omnichannel capabilities in terms of digital
displays and a WiFi environment.
Vasanth Kumar, executive
director of Max, said, “Unlike the US, India’s per capita retail space
creation is very low and so is the share of organised retail. Also, 60
per cent of our population is below 30 years,”. “As a country, we have
a long way to go before being saturated,” Kumar pointed out.
Wahi, partner and head (consumer markets) at KPMG, said with rents
declining and e-commerce facing a slowdown, modern trade would resume
expanding its footprint, especially in large formats (over 50,000 sq
ft) and medium formats (10,000-30,000 sq ft).
e-commerce will continue to grow and some categories will be bought
predominantly online, most Indian consumers will continue to shop for
high-value products in brick and mortar stores,” Wahi said.
Dutta, chief executive officer at Third Eyesight, said in a market as
fragmented as India’s department stores “have a role to play as
authoritative ‘experience environments’ for the consumer and as
platforms to showcase diverse brands.”