Mobile and telecom retail chain The MobileStore is preparing to launch private label handsets, even as it readies to consolidate its retail network and exit unprofitable locations. The company is currently in the final phase of discussions with various manufacturers and testing for various models is underway, Rajiv Agarwal, CEO and director, Essar Telecom Retail Ltd told IndiaRetailing. “We are targeting end of April to launch these handsets. The new brand will be targeted at the youth, will be extremely rich in features and will range between Rs 2,500 and Rs 10,000,” he said.
Responding to queries regarding the reported closure of underperforming stores in the chain, Agarwal said, “The current slowdown has proved to be a good period to consolidate our operations, which will give us long term benefits. We are renegotiating rentals across all our stores. So far we have negotiated rentals for almost 600 stores. We may shut down about 50 stores where we feel we are not getting a good deal. Some of the stores will be relocated to some better locations in the vicinity.”
“We have around 1,400 stores currently across 200 cities, and are by far the largest telecom retailer in the country,” he added.
— Nupur Chakraborty