Shoppers’ Stop, promoted by K Raheja Group, may tie up with US-based, $26.79-billion retailer Macy’s Inc. to bring its apparel brands to the country. The company’s talks with the US retailer are in advanced stages and they may finalise it soon, according to sources close to Shoppers’ Stop.
However, top company officials declined to comment on the new developments. “We are not at a stage to comment on any such developments,” a company spokesperson told Indiaretailing.
Macy’s Inc., which owns the largest department store in the United States, is considered to be the world’s largest retailer of fashion apparel, accessories, cosmetics and home furnishing merchandise. Previously known as the Federated Department Stores, it also owns the upscale Bloomingdale’s stores and initiated a name change earlier this year to become Macy’s Inc., considering that this brand contributes 90 per cent of its sales.
Shoppers’ Stop is one of the three retail ventures of K Raheja Corp, the other two being a book store chain called Crosswords – spread over 30 outlets – and a hypermarket called Hypercity. It is learnt that Shoppers’ Stop is also planning a rights issue of up to Rs 500 crore ($125 million) to fund its expansion plans. For Hypercity, in addition to a 1.2 lakh square feet store that is functioning at Malad in Mumbai, the group has signed several properties. The move will increase the number of Hypercity to around 15 in the next three years.
The group has already booked 30 more locations for its department store Shoppers’ Stop, with a cumulative area of 2.7 million square feet. This increases the total number of stores to 50. Recently, it opened its latest and the largest lifestyle store in the country, at 1.35 lakh square feet, in New Delhi. About 23 stores are spread across more than 12.5 lakh square feet of space.
The Rs 800-crore Shoppers’ Stop had been in talks with many other apparel giants over the last two years, including the flagship chain of the Spanish Inditex group – Zara. The talks reportedly fell through. Meanwhile, there were rumours in the US media circles that Sears Holdings Corp chairman and billionaire investor Edward Lampert have shown interest in buying Macy’s Inc.
– Vishnu Rageev R, Bangalore Bureau