The India Shopping Centre Forum (ISCF) 2011, a two-day event organised by IMAGES Group, kick started with the inaugural address by Jayant Kochar, group director & CEO, IMAGES Group who threw light on the importance of the conference that will create a knowledge platform for retailers and developers to drive growth in the retail market. “The India Shopping Centre Forum 2011 is not only about exchanging ideas but also about incorporating these ideas to contribute to the economic and social growth of the country. The success of the conference lies in translating these thoughts and ideas into results,” said Kochar at the event.
Day one of the ISCF 2011 saw a highly engaging and interesting workshop on Mall Management. Conducted by Ian Watt, director, Pioneer Property Zone and Jonathan Yach, CEO, Propcare Mall Management the workshop discussed ways to differentiate a mall from its competitors and how competent mall managers can make the winning difference in ensuring the mall’s commercial success. They shared the best practices of some of the successful malls in the world driving home the point that the way a mall is managed today will determine the amount of business it drives tomorrow.
Discussing the key elements in building successful malls in India, Raj Singh Gehlot, chairman, Ambience Group of Companies said that mall development is not about real estate development but about creating a service industry. “Goods and services aren’t enough in today’s market. Grabbing the eye-balls of the customers through innovative designs, promotional activities, good management and security, recreation areas and positioning of the mall are sure to bring them back. Instead of creating spaces, create experiences,” vice chairman, Shoppers Stop, addressed the panel saying that trust plays a major role in revenue shares between retailer and developer. He observed that the retail sector has grown over the years throwing open a co-operative and collaboration partnership between the retailers and developers. “Retailers have to work at long term s. The malls should
look at the lifetime value of the customers,” added B.S Nagesh.
Thomas Varghese, CEO, Aditya Birla Retail Ltd , spoke about the macro-economic trends to be followed to bring in growth in consumption. Favourable demographics, organised retail and ensured benefits for each of its stakeholders will drive growth. Challenges faced by the retailers and mall developers like differential tax rates, unplanned growth in cities, unavailability of government land will be ironed out in the coming years as the retail sector comes of age, he stressed.
S. Raghunandan, SCAI & CEO, Prestige Retail Group, ended the session on a positive note of growth in the retail sector with the opening of more shopping centres and maintaining good relations with stakeholders like government and banks.
– IndiaRetailing Bureau