Review 2009 / Retail Ahoy : From tractors to retail tracks

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The automobile major Mahi ndras have always been hailed for their uncanny knack of making any venture moving, whether it is tractor or real estate. And the $4.5- billion group that has interests in automobiles to real eastate to luxury holiday business, has decided to move on to the country’s red hot retail sector too.

The group announced setting up of a chain of premium lifestyle stores selling apparel, toys and furnishings, under its newly-floated arm Mahindra Retail. It would operate under group company Mahindra InterTrade. The company is yet to announce details of the plan including the number of stores to be rolled out. But, the group already has licences to distribute children’s apparel, toys and furnishings of giants such as Walt  Disney, Mattel Toys, Lego and the Australian Woolworths’ Ladybird.

“As such, it is a natural extension of the group’s existing business, the retail too comes,” said Mahindra InterTrade executive vice-chairman Raghunath Murti, announcing the retail plan. The company is planning to introduce private labels in its stores. Though the plan is yet in the store, they have started recruiting for the venture.

The company is planning customised cold and dry warehouses and fruits and vegetable processing centres for corporates in cities like  Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kochi and Kolkata. Also, group arm Mahindra AgriBusiness is in talks with Europ ean supply chain companies to set up a supply chain ventures for international and domestic markets.

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Neeta Nair

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