Mothercare expansion accelerated

Mothercare_LogoMothercare, the world renowned brand for expecting mothers and children, and Shoppers’ Stop- their exclusive franchisee in India are expanding their network at fast pace in India.

Although, the original plans had envisaged opening of 40 stores in five years, they have already set up 8 stores in the last seven months and they are well on their way to add another 12 stores before March, 2007, reports the Hindu Business Line. At this pace, Mothercare may have 100 stores in the next 5 years, according to Mr Ben Gordon, CEO, and Mr B. S. Nagesh, Managing Director of Shoppers’ Stop.

Of the eight stores in operation so far, six are housed in Shoppers’ Stop, while the balance two are standalone stores – one each in Chennai and Mumbai.

“We’re trying to behave like a global brand – an iconic British retailer with a global perspective,” said Mr Gordon, while discussing plans for India.

Having started its global foray in Kuwait 24 years ago, the 45-year-old Mothercare, for quite some time, has been focusing on international expansion. It is present in 39 countries with 300 outlets and does big business in West Asia, Turkey, Russia, Greece and Ireland.

In the UK, Mothercare has 240 outlets, all of which are companyowned, however, outside the UK they are completely franchised.

Apart from apparel and accessories such as socks and mittens, the Mothecare offers cots, prams, car seats, toys, and feeding, bathing and toilet training products for babies.

On marketing plans, Mr Nagesh said that Mothercare aims to reach consumers at all touchpoints – through print, direct marketing, Shoppers’ Stop outlets and loyalty programmes, gynaecologists’ offices, in-store and through celebrity parents. Shoppers’ Stop has signed an agreement to locate Mothercare in 49 of its outlets, he added.

Mothercare has been sourcing from Tirupur in Tamil Nadu for nearly eight years, Mr Gordon said. Now it sources from Delhi too. It has set up a sourcing office as well.

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