New Delhi; After finding a right model in India, German wholesale major Metro Cash & Carry is ready to expand its business in India, although it will prioritise existing markets to consolidate its position.
The company, which is aiming to have 50 stores by 2020, has opened its 23rd store in Lucknow and is gearing up to roll out rest 27 stores in the next four years. “We have got a right model now and (are) ready for rapid expansion in the country. We have now become the largest cash & carry store in the country,” Metro Cash & Carry India MD Arvind Mediratta told PTI.
The company, which is currently operating six stores in Bangalore, three in Hyderabad, four in Punjab and two each in Delhi and Mumbai, is not looking at expanding in new regions. “Our strategy is not to get into a pan India presence but to make sure that we are able to expand and intensify our presence in these chosen markets,” he said.
Mediratta further said: “We want to invest in the big markets like Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi NCR and UP”. According to him, a place like Bangalore, where Metro already operates six stores, still has potential of having two more. The company, which follow October-September calender, has added five stores this fiscal.
Metro, which entered in UP last week, has plans to intensify its operation in the state. “We have lot of hopes and expectation from the UP market. We believe that in UP we can have 25 stores and this is just beginning,” he said, adding “UP has the potential to be our biggest market”.
In the cash & carry format, Metro is focusing on kirana stores, hotels and restaurants and the professionals. “India is a land of opportunity and we believe that there is lot of potential because there are at least one crore kirana stores and lakhs of hotels, restaurants and self employed professionals,” he said. When asked that whether Metro would consider to participate in multi-brand retail, after shift in government’s policy, he said: “We are a €59 billion company globally and half of that business come from Cash & Carry format. And in India, we believe that we have a huge opportunity...We intend to focus on this format.”
Presently, India is among the four focus markets of Metro group for future expansion. The other three are Russia, China and Turkey.