Reliance Retail looks overseas

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Four years after making an entry into the retail sector, the Mukesh Ambani-controlled Reliance Retail is exploring opportunities in Russia and some African markets. The company would start due diligence on the Australian market later this year. Reliance Retail which clocked Rs 4,500 crores in sales in 2009-10 has earmarked a $250 million budget to fund the first round of international expansion.

From food and groceries to bringing global brands like Hamleys, Diesel and Marks & Spencer, Reliance has tried to expand in almost all formats. Now the company plans to focus on large format stores with food and grocery and consumer durables first on the radar. Since its inception in 2006, Reliance Retail (RRL) has grown into an organization that caters to millions of customers, thousands of farmers and vendors.

Based on its core growth strategy of backward integration, RRL has made rapid progress towards building an entire value chain starting from the farmers to the end consumers. However, over the last two years, the company has been making losses in India and has had to shut down several stores and scale down its size of hypermarkets. But despite criticism, the company has not stopped dreaming big. This time around, the company is trying to start from scratch in the international markets and is also trying to create a sourcing hub in Africa.

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