Large organized retailers are reviving expansion plans after COVID-19 disruptions stopped store openings last year. Fashion, fast-food chains and electronics retailers will lead store openings over the next 12 months. Shubhranshu Pani, Managing Director-Retail Services, JLL India says, retail expansion has picked up for value retailers with casual and athleisure doing well. Everybody is focusing on Tier-II and III markets while Tier-I markets are yet to reach full recovery, he adds.
Retailers such as Benetton, Levi’s, Aditya Birla Fashion Retail with brands Louis Phillipe, Allen Solly, Peter England and fast-food chains such as Domino’s and McDonald’s have made progress with store opening plans. Benetton India aims to open 30 to 40 stores this year, says Sandeep Chugh, Managing Director. The retailer is eyeing markets such as Gangtok, Ranchi and Delhi.
Levi’s also overhauled its in-store experience. It undertook a massive store transformation project called RX3—resize, relocate and rejuvenate–for its store network. The result was that it shut 10 per cent of its bottom tail-end stores and opened the exact number of stores by the end of 2020. However, the average size of stores was bigger, locations were better, and the store format was upgraded to the global format, said Sanjeev Mohanty, Managing Director, South Asia, Middle East and North Africa, Levi Strauss & Co.