In an attempt to venture into the yet-to-be-tapped markets in India, Bata India Limited (BIL) has planned to open around 200 outlets and will primarily focus on cities where currently it does not have a presence.
Confirming this to Indiaretailing, Manoj Chandra, vice president of marketing and customer service at Bata, said, “We have now decided to focus more on those markets where we are not present, and for this we will open around 200 more stores in the next two years across various regions in India. This initiative will help us in being the largest footwear retailer in the country.”
The company has lined up major investments for the upcoming new stores, which will be spread across four formats including upmarket flagship stores, smart and trendy city stores, and super stores and traditional family stores. However, Chandra denied media reports of taking the franchise route whereby it will have its employees as franchisee.
Besides expansions, Bata India has decided to focus more on the women’s shoes category. The company has planned to launch more brands as it feels that this particular segment is neglected by footwear manufacturers. According to Chandra, “Women’s footwear constitutes only 40 per cent of the total footwear market. To cater to this particular segment, we have planned to launch more brands.”
Bata India currently operates more than 1,100 stores across the country and claims to be the largest retailer in India. The company’s standalone financial results for the quarter ended March 2008 indicated a rise as it recorded net sales of Rs 21,876 lakh, as against Rs 18,267 lakh recorded during the same period in 2007.