Metro Cash & Carry, the Indian subsidiary of Metro AG opened its 31st centre in India in North Karnataka on 7 April. The store, located at Hubli was inaugurated by Shri Arvind Bellard, MLA, Hubli-Dharward constituency, in the presence of the company’s MD & CEO, Mr. Arvind Mediratta. Spread over 34,000 sq ft at Navanagar Road, the centre would provide direct & indirect employment to over 500 people and serve the needs of business customers of the region. Kirana shopkeepers, small traders, offices, Hotels, Restaurants & Canteens (HoReCa) are the key segments that would benefit immensely from the presence of Metro here. The store is also expected to serve similar requirements in neighbouring districts such as Gadag, Haveri, Davanagere, etc.
The store will also power the “Metro Wholesale” App whereby registered users can place orders online and get the items delivered at their doorstep. This new feature is expected to garner a lot of support from the local traders, who otherwise derive very thin margins especially on FMCG items. National e-comm players in the B2B space including Udaan, Amazon & Flipkart have been increasing their presence in a massive way over the past 2 years, ever since the pandemic led-lockdown began, which caused serious disruptions in supply chain.
Speaking about METRO’s commitment towards sustainable expansion in India, Mr. Arvind Mediratta, MD and CEO, METRO Cash & Carry India said, “We are delighted to expand our operations north of Karnataka with our eighth store in the state and bring the METRO Wholesale experience to the culturally rich city of Hubballi. As Champion for Independent Business, we are committed to empower the small businesses and MSMEs in Hubballi by providing a robust distribution network as well as boost the local supplier eco-system. As we expand our footprint in the state, we are enabling employment opportunities for over 500 youth in various operations, directly and indirectly, which will provide a huge impetus to the local economy.
He further added, “With the opening of our 31st store in the country, we are bullish on our India expansion; we will continue to add more stores; create more job opportunities; upskill the local talent; strengthen the indigenous sourcing and implement METRO’s globally benchmarked quality and best practices to fulfil the larger vision of AatmaNirbhar Bharat.”
A decade or so back, Metro India started a “Smart Kirana” concept where the company supports Mom & Pop retailers to transform themselves, right from a credible storefront, the right assortment (of products) for that geography, appropriate pricing based on the demographics and optimal inventory holding. The company has till date supported and been responsible for the creation of over 2,000 such concept stores across India.
The company started operations in India over 20 years back and has presence only in the B2B retail space due to FDI guidelines which doesn’t allow multi-brand retailers with international legacy & investment. The company, HQ in Germany is present in 34 countries worldwide In FY 19-20, the company reported an annual turnover of GBP 25.6 Bn but has been severely impacted for the past 2 years due to the online disruption caused due to the pandemic worldwide and in India.