Planet Retail is a retail marketing organization with a difference; the difference being customer orientation. At Planet Retail, customers are placed at the helm of all operations. As the founder Dr Tainwala says, “Treat your partners the way you would like to be treated. Only ethical practices bring in success and satisfaction. Exist for delivering a great experience to consumers at our stores. Happy employees, involved partners and profitable shareholders will help us in achieving that goal faster and on a sustainable basis.” In line with this thinking Planet Retail’s HR has initiated some innovative incentive policies comprising of store upkeep, controlling shrinkage and wow customer experience. As a result of these initiatives, all associates from service office level to store teams can earn up to 200 per cent of their salary as incentives depending on the store or functions they perform. Also, Planet Retail does not believe in the concept of a head office.
According to the COO, Vikas Purohit, “We do not have any confidential information within the teams. People are aware of the salary of their peers and bosses – and there are cases where reporting manager has lesser salary than his team member – and both understand the reason and logic for the same.” Employees are sensitized on expectations from different colleagues. For instance, a working mother has different work hours, compared to a bachelor. Retail Planet’s HR trains staff to accept and honor these differences and not let them work to anyone’s disadvantage. A work culture that is very laudable.
At the level of business Retail Planet has various formats
such as shop-in-shops, EBOs and department stores for the international brands they retail. Purohit explains, “We are working directly with international brands like Accessrozie, Debenhams, Guess, NEXT, Nautica, Osh Kosh, Carters, Maidenform and Samsonite – and through our network companies with The Body Shop and Dr Kiehl’s.” In fact, some top global brands were brought into the country by them. Currently they have more than 150 doors between all these brands. “With a strong focus on process optimization, the company is aiming for one million sq. ft. of retail space within the next five years and this year alone, to add another 200,000 sq. ft. The plan is to double the turnover every year for next three years.”
Retail Planet sees managing and growing the departmental store concept like Debenhams to be their biggest opportunity. They firmly believe that there exists a space of premium departmental stores in India and that Planet Retail is out there to fill that consumer need. Purohit feels a lot of work has to be done to tap the true potential in metros. “We don’t look at Bangalore as Bangalore -- but as five large catchments (Whitefield, Banerghatta, North Bangalore, CBD and 100 ft road). Same is the case with Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad. We will focus on tapping the true potential in these towns, along with expansion to Tier II cities. We are partnering with some good retail companies, who are coming up with professionally managed MBOs, carrying all international brands – in Tier II cities.” As for the future, Planet Retail is focused on consolidation of these businesses along with adding three more brands, currently under the final negotiation stage, to its portfolio.