“India has one of the largest numbers of retail outlets in the world. The sector is witnessing exponential growth with retail developments taking place not only in major cities and metros but even in tier-II and tier-III cities in India” elaborates Dr. Swati Piramal, President of Assocham.
The major factors fuelling the growth are:
-Increase in disposable income of people -Improving lifestyles -Increasing international exposure -Growing aspirations among customers-India has a large middle class that is considered to be major potential customer groups -The Indian youth is perceived as trend setters and decision makers and also as large contributors to the retail phenomenon -Tourist spending in India is increasing, which also contributes to the retail boom A number of changes have taken place on the Indian retail front such as exponentially increased availability of international brands, increasing number of malls and hypermarkets as a result of easy availability of retail space. For the customer, the emphasis has shifted from reasonable pricing to convenience, efficiency and ambience. With the Indian government having opened up the doors for FDI, the entry of foreign retailers into the country has become easier. Food and grocery are the two categories in the Indian retail sector which offer the most promising opportunities. Apart from this, the other areas where there are vast possibilities for Indian retailers are family entertainment, jewellery, apparel, electronics and consumer durables. Indian retailers are also trying to create a sustainable niche for themselves in areas such as books, gifts and music with strong branding and lifestyle connotations.
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