Fipola is the first modern meat retail store in India. It caters to all meat requirements of Indian customers with a hygienic and convenient approach. The meat retailer has 13 stores in Chennai, spanning across 1,9475 sq.ft. of retail space and covering 275 to 300 SKUs in stores. Progressive Grocer speaks to Sushil Kanugolu, MD and CEO, Fipola, about the brand’s foundation, its philosophy and the future potential for modern meat retail in India.
What is the customer proposition and marketing positioning of Fipola?
Fipola stores have different kinds of meats under one roof. Premium quality meat with a rich texture is available at our stores. We maintain a great standard of hygiene and cleanliness at our stores. Everything from transportation to packaging of the meat is done with care and the meats are kept in air-conditioned containers under a regular temperature without adding any preservatives to it. Our staff operates with some ground rules of maintaining hygiene in all our stores. Customers can even order online or call up a local call center to place orders and get the meat delivered at home.
What is your location strategy?
Our strategy for store location is to have our stores on main roads in the residential areas – near supermarkets. The location of the store plays a major role in getting the target group of customers for our stores. It also helps in garnering the interest of the general public.
Can you cite specific instances of your location strategy having a favourable impact on business?
We have opened a store besides Nilgiris in Chennai and it has impacted the footfall at our stores, remarkably. People have started noticing our stores and the company’s name because of the location strategy of our stores.
Have you taken up any customer service initiatives?
Fipola has an Omnichannel approach and has an online website as well. We have home delivery options, which give our customers the ease of shopping from their homes. We have a complete e-commerce set up for meeting customer convenience.
What is the go-forward strategy of the company?
Our brand’s plans, in the long run, includes creating a market for the rare breeds of meat. We want to collaborate with Kadaknath Agro to create a market for black meat chicken in Chennai and in the country.
Black meat chicken is a premium variety of chicken from Indonesia. We want our customers to experience the rich variety of meats that are not available in India like fresh Norwegian salmon, lobsters, and jumbo prawns.
How would you describe your store’s strengths and achievements so far?
In general, women and children are not regular customers at meat shops. Men buy meat frequently, and for men the overall meat buying experience isn’t good– the stench; the flies; and the unhygienic conditions are the major drawbacks of buying meat at a butcher’s shop. However, this is not the case at Fipola and we have female customers and kids at our stores as well. At Fipola, the overall experience of buying meat is a delight and a convenience for customers. With a variety of products to choose from, there are great options for customers at our stores. We are proud to have changed the stereotype of meat retail in India.
What is your roadmap for the future?
The roadmap for our brand is to be the go-to store for all kinds of protein needs. We want to be the store where all varieties of meat and seafood are available under one roof. We want to be a part of all the large format supermarkets. We specialize in meat and have an experience of three decades in it. We want the company to handle the meat section of all the big supermarkets in the country.