India: Apparel retailer Koutons Retail in order to strengthen its retail presence in India, plans to increase the number of its stores from 1.420 to about 1,500 by March 2009. Speaking to IndiaRetailing, Balwinder Singh Ahluwalia, president, Koutons Retail said, “As a part of our expansion plan, we plan to open to launch 80 more stores by the end of FY ’09.”
However, the company plans to keep 90 per cent these stores on franchised model and the remaining 10 per cent as company-owned showrooms, informed Ahluwalia.
Further, the company plans to expand its retail space by taking basements and first floors of the buildings on lease. “Rentals drop by 30 to 50 per cent if we open our stores in basements or first floors”, added Ahluwalia. The average space of the retail stores would extend from 900 to 3,000 square feet.
Meanwhile Ahluwalia accepted that the Rs 7.93 billion Koutons retail may fall short of its revenue target for current fiscal. “Economic slump effect is on the entire country. It has affected the retail sectors as well,” concluded Aluwalia.
Source : IndiaRetailing