Metro Shoes, one of the largest fashion footwear retailers in India, with a countrywide network of more than 108 prime locations, has shifted its focus to tier II cities in order to tap the market potential there. Offering a mix of Indian and international designs, the retailer’s turnover last fiscal exceeded Rs 285 crore.
The retailer will launch its store in Raipur’s Magneto mall in the next two months. On April 23, it opened a store in AlphaOne Amritsar. Metro Shoes is also eyeing high streets in Allahabad and Guwahati for expansion. The store in Guwahati will be opened on GS Road, while the one in Allahabad on Sardar Patel Marg.
Rafique Malik, MD, Metro Shoes, says the retailer will open 50 stores in 2010, which will come up in metros as well as tier II and III cities.
Although high streets remain the retailer’s first choice, it also wants to explore malls. In fact, it has both pure rental and revenue-sharing arrangements with malls. With AlphaOne Amritsar, it has a pure rental model, while with Magneto, it has the revenue-sharing model. Malik says the revenue-sharing model is feasible for both mall developer and the retailer.
“Tier II and III cities have tremendous potential; people in these cities are brand conscious and ready to splurge. The look of our stores in these areas will be no different from our stores in Mumbai or Delhi. But rental costs in these areas are relatively less. We don’t even face much competition in these areas as there are not many fashion footwear retailers here. We want to create a niche in these areas. Ambala, Calicut, Varanasi, Guwahati, Raipur, Amritsar and Allahabad have great potential,” Malik says.
Apart from Metro Shoes, the company has two other retail brands — Mochi and More Shoes for Less(MSL). MSL will exist in the shop-in-shop format and for this are trying to tie-up with Spencer’s and Hypercity. For Metro Shoes and Mochi, the company wants to stick to the Exclusive Brand Outlet (EBO) format. The ideal size of these EBOs is 1,500 sq.ft — 1,100-1,200 sq. ft for the front, while the remaining 200-300 sq.ft for backend.
— Shubhra Saini