METRO GROUP will renew its expansion drive for India where its sales division METRO Cash & Carry has been active since 2003. India will now become one of the key expansion countries at the German trade group, who sets its sights on 50 wholesale markets by 2020. At present METRO runs 16 distribution centers in 12 cities across India.
"India has always been an important future growth market of METRO and we have seen continuous like-for-like growth recently in India. Now we decide to inject extra momentum into our expansion course there to operate 50 distribution centers by 2020", said Olaf Koch, Chairman of the Management Board of METRO AG and CEO of METRO Cash & Carry. "India will join Russia, China and Turkey as one of the four focus expansion countries within our portfolio."
METRO Cash & Carry has over the past decade sustainably developed its local distribution network in India and has continuously enhanced its sound relationship with a broad range of stakeholders. Each METRO distribution center in India typically creates about 300 jobs for the local community. To fully fit itself into the local business context, METRO in India has designed a unique store format which is smaller and less capital intensive but responds to the customer needs better. The valuable insights and learnings of the past ten years give the company a solid platform to build upon in South Asia's fast growing economy and tap into its distinct commercial potential.
"We have been relentlessly consolidating our market position by translating our nuanced understanding of the customer into daily practices, tailored projects and innovations”, said Rajeev Bakshi, Managing Director of METRO Cash & Carry India. "We are delighted that METRO has established itself as a responsible and relevant member of the community. This provides a firm foundation for us to switch our expansion into the fast lane now."
Ever since its market entry, the wholesaler stays in close and constant touch with its professional customers, in particular the small independent shops locally known as Kirana that arguably constitutes a vast majority of India’s retail sector. METRO India runs a variety of customized support schemes, both on the sales floor and in the field, to strengthen Kirana shops' competitiveness in the rapidly evolving market environment, which also benefits the community at large. The latest expansion acceleration will further enable METRO to champion the independent professional customers across the country.
On the sourcing end, METRO India extensively applies its proven expertise and competence in food security and safety, supply chain and trade infrastructure to ensure reliable and enduring supply of high quality products to its professional customers. For example, the company goes one step further to secure the freshness and quality by collecting agricultural products directly from farms before shipping the harvest to its markets through its own modern logistic infrastructure, which clearly increases the efficiency and security of delivery. More frequently the company arranges a number of specialized training seminars for local food producers to refine their capabilities to fit METRO's quality standards.