Retail Sector: A Hitherto Ignored Subdivision in Real Estate India

Retail sub-division seems to have been given the step-motherly treatment by the real estate entrepreneurs, consultants, builders, and developers. So far, the focus has been more on residential sector. But the retail sector too bids lucrative potential to the budding realty entrepreneurs. Owing to the ever increasing population of the departmental stores, retail management has become an important division of the marketing chain. Organized retailing has come out to be an important field in the country. Presently, there are 1.2 core retailers in the country, most of which are part of an unorganized sector. In India the overall value of the retail marketing sector is estimated at Rs. 12,000 crores and is expected to augment by Rs 1 lakh crore by 2010 A.D. As per a Mc Kenzie report the retailing sector is the second largest (after agriculture) in India. Globally also, overtaking Finance and Engineering, Retailing has taken shape of the largest industry. 50 of the Fortune 500 companies and 25 of Asian Top 200 companies are retailers.

The retailing industry has come into India via huge Shopping Malls, and big departmental stores and retail chains like Shopper Stop, Big Bazaar, and Forum. The employment opportunities in the arena are immense, and have nice financial rewards also. The big names associated with retail marketing like Pantaloon Retail, Shopper Stop, Trent, Lifestyle, Subhiksha, Koutons, Bata, and Liberty will invest about Rs. 6.5 billion in the ensuing 2 years. Moreover, international chain Walmart is also expected to invest in India. According to KSA Technopak, a consulting company in Delhi, there will be about 600 shopping malls in the country by 2009. At the moment their number is 200.

Right now the percentile of organized retailing (Multi-brand outlets, Malls, and Franchises) is paltry, but this is not the complete picture, because the picture will change rapidly and the opportunities will also increase. It is being estimated that by 2009 this industry will start appreciating by the rate of 25-30 % per year. Furthermore, 2-3 million jobs will be generated in this sector. Integrated retailing (retail-cum-entertainment), a sub-division of this sector, is booming at a great pace in the metropolitan cities.

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