Mumbai: Avani Davda, who took over as managing director of Godrej Nature’s Basket, a premium food retail chain owned by the Godrej Group, in May this year said on Thursday that she will streamline the retail formats of the gourmet food chain as it looks at becoming a neighbourhood store, besides focusing on private labels, online market and penetration in southern and western regions for growth.
During her first interaction with the media after taking over Godrej Nature’s Basket, she said, “We are evolving a new format with refreshed store design to showcase our stores in a new way.” The stores with the new design will be unveiled by end of the financial year.
Davda was earlier heading Tata Starbucks Pvt. Ltd, a joint venture of Tata Global Beverages and Starbucks Corp.
The retailer currently has various formats ranging from 2,000 sq.ft to 8,000 sq.ft. The company will look at a more consistent size of 4,000-4,500 sq ft and deeper penetration in the South and West, said Davda.
There are 35 Godrej Nature’s Basket stores across Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad and the National Capital Region.
Godrej Nature’s Basket has been growing at an average of 25% per annum. The like-to-like growth is at 21%, said Davda, while sharing that the company will maintain a similar growth trajectory to end the year with revenues of approximately Rs.350 crore this financial year. Davda did not share the profit numbers as it is a privately held chain. Like-to-like growth represents comparable growth for stores that have been operational for more than a year.
Davda’s agenda also includes doubling its revenues from online retail following the acquisition of online grocer ekstop.com in February last year. “Since acquisition we have already doubled our online revenues in 18 months to 10% of our overall revenues,” said Davda.
Further, she will focus on growing the high margins private labels business which includes brands like L’Exclusif and Healthy Alternatives.
“Our aim is to have a strong logistics and supply chain, penetrate in the South and West, grow our own brands and also grow our online business,” said Davda.
The strategy is well thought out, feel experts. “There is a trust associated with the brand they can leverage it better to grow through private labels. Also there is huge potential to grow online,” said Siddharth Bafna, partner and head (Corporate Finance), Lodha & Co, a professional advisory services firm. He said change in the look and feel could also benefit the company.