Firstcry.com to add 30 franchise stores this year
The online baby-products portal plans to expand its physical network to 400 stores by 2017
Bangalore: Online baby-products portal Firstcry.com announced on Monday that it will expand its physical network from 70 to 100 stores by the end of 2014 and reach 400 by 2017.
The Firstcry.com branded stores will be 1,000-2,000 sq. ft and require the franchisee to invest about Rs.3,000 per sq. ft, the company said in a statement.
“By entering into the untapped markets, where offline presence of baby products are low, we are highly optimistic about our company’s growth. Since shoppers exhibit mixed behaviour by purchasing online and offline, we needed to offer solutions in both space and that is why we started building both online platform and offline store in parallel,” Supam Maheshwari, founder and chief executive at Firstcry.com said in the statement.
Firstcry.com has an inventory of more than 70,000 items from over 600 international and Indian brands such as Mattel, Ben10, Pigeon, Funskool, Hotwheels, Nuby, Farlin, Medela, Pampers, Disney, Barbie, Gerber, Fisher Price and Mee Mee.
The move comes as other online retailers such as Myntra.com, Zivame.com and Bluestone.com also try to establish an offline presence by setting up stores and trial rooms. India’s largest online fashion retailer Myntra has plans to open stores next year, while online innerwear seller Zivame.com has already launched trial rooms.
Online retail is valued at $3.1 billion (around Rs.18,900 crore), or 10% of the organized retail market, and is estimated to grow to $22 billion, or over 15% of the organized retail market, in five years, according to a November 2013 report by brokerage firm CLSA.