Food offers great opportunity for retail trade in India. Kishore Biyani owned, the Rs. 2,199 crore, Pantaloon Retail, which is the country’s biggest listed retailing company, has been one of the pioneers in this field with its food division operating under the brand name of ‘Food Bazaar.’ Presently, Food Bazaar has 60 outlets, all of which are located as cut-in food stores within the premises of Big Bazaars. Within the next one year, Food Bazaar is planning to add 75 new oulets to take its tally of stores to 135 by the end of 2007. This is a part of the overall 4,000 stores across all formats expansion programme of Pantaloon to be executed within four years by 2010. The importance of food business can be gauged from the fact that one fourth of these 4,000 stores will be in the food division of the company.
This was revealed by the company officials during media briefings at the time of the opening of the first standalone Food Bazaar in Hyderabad on Friday. Pantaloon already has two cut-in Food Bazaar stores at Central and Big Bazaar in Hyderabad and is gearing up to open four more Food Bazaar stores in the next two months.
While, cut-in food stores will continue to be a part of Big Bazaars and Centrals, similar stand-alone stores will be also be set up soon in smaller cities like Visakhapatnam and Mangalore. According to company officials, tier-II cities and towns are also ready for the modern food retailing formats.