Germany’s Metro Cash & Carry on Tuesday said the lockdown will have financial impact on its Indian operations, but its focus will be to ensure there is no shortage of food and grocery supplies to kirana stores.
According to a PTI report: Hailing the government’s decision to extend the lockdown till May 3, Metro Cash & Carry India MD and CEO Arvind Mediratta told in an e-mailed interview that social distancing is the most essential thing to follow in the current situation and the company will continue abiding by all advisories.
“The lockdown has impacted the economy adversely and that is a fact, and like every sector this crisis will impact the company financially. However, we are focusing all our efforts in serving the nation by ensuring Kiranas who provide 90 percent of our daily essentials have access to all necessary products,” he told PTI.
Mediratta was responding to a query on the financial impact of the lockdown on the company.
“We are prioritising on maintaining a seamless supply chain system so that there is no shortage of food and grocery. At this point of time, as a wholesaler, adequate supply of essentials coupled with safety and hygiene of customers and employees is of utmost importance for us,” he was further quoted by PTI as saying.
Commenting on the plans charted by the company for the extended period of the lockdown, Mediratta told PTI, “In terms of preparing further ahead- we are ensuring three important aspects of our business are being taken care of — employees, customers and store supplies.”
Metro will continue “motivating and incentivising employees to come to work and help our communities get supplies of daily essentials,” he said, adding the company would also continue implementing stringent safety and hygiene measures for its customers, staff and employees.
“Most importantly, we will focus all our efforts in ensuring all our customers, especially the Kiranas get adequate supplies of essentials. In order to strengthen our efforts and enable easy access of daily essentials, we recently launched our E-Commerce app that we can easily cater to a wider base of Kiranas.
“We are closely working with our supplier partners for supplies. We have amplified our own brand production as well. We are also working to build our supplies to suffice huge requirements we are receiving from various NGOs,” Mediratta told PTI.
Two weeks prior to the lockdown, metro had worked out a list of essential items required by customers mainly hand wash, hand sanitizers, soaps, baby and hygiene products, FMCG Food, key commodities items and essentials, to prioritise purchase from suppliers and the items were purchased.
“Whilst the supply ecosystem was so dynamic for over 5 weeks, we continuously evaluated the purchase plans and adapted to the changing supplies in the market every day, to keep high availability of essential items in our stores where many other trade channels went dry on stocks,” Mediratta was quoted by PTI as saying.
Metro Cash & Carry, which entered the Indian market in 2003, currently operates 28 wholesale distribution centers in cities.
The Prime Minister on Tuesday announced the extension of the lockdown till May 3. India is presently going through an unprecedented complete lockdown from March 25 to prevent the spread of coronavirus.