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Bharti, Wal-Mart to float JV in front-end retail ‘if allowed’

Bharti, Wal-Mart to float JV in front-end retail ‘if allowed’
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First Published: Tue, Aug 21 2007. 01 23 PM IST
Updated: Tue, Aug 21 2007. 01 23 PM IST
PTI
New Delhi: On the heels of announcing a joint venture for wholesale cash-and-carry business with the world’s biggest retailer Wal-Mart, Bharti Enterprises said on 21 August that the two would form a 50:50 partnership for front-end retail if allowed by the government.
“The issue is FDI in retail is not allowed (for multi brand). In the event FDI is opened up to 100 per cent, there will be a 50:50 joint venture for front-end retail,” Bharti Enterprises chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal told reporters on the sidelines of the CII Marketing Summit here.
He said the partnership would largely depend on the government policy. “If the government allows only 26% FDI, then Wal-Mart will have only 26%.”
Asked if Wal-Mart would choose to go alone in case the FDI norms were completely relaxed, he said Bharti was a partner of choice for the US-based retailer.
“Wal-Mart failed in Korea and Germany, while they are struggling in Japan and relatively doing well in China. They do recognise the need for a local partner,” he added.
Bharti and Wal-Mart had announced a 50:50 joint venture for wholesale cash-and-carry business on August 6 to serve small kirana stores besides other big retailers.
Bharti and Wal-Mart would hold equal stake in the joint venture and would focus on setting up supply chain and back-end logistics infrastructure.
The joint-venture’s first wholesale store is expected to be opened by the end of 2008, Wal-Mart India President (Operations) Raj Jain had said. “Over the next seven years, we are planning to open 10-15 wholesale Cash-and-Carry facilities throughout the country,” he added.
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First Published: Tue, Aug 21 2007. 01 23 PM IST