Future Group turns focus back on retail ops as deal with RIL hangs in balance – Times of India


NEW DELHI: Kishore Biyani-led Future Group has turned its attention back on retail operations as its proposed deal with Reliance Retail hangs in balance.
The cash-strapped supermarket operator, which is locked in a bitter legal battle with US retailer Amazon, will deliver groceries and apparel from its Big Bazaar stores to consumers within two hours in a bid to expand into India’s booming e-commerce space, which is currently dominated by the likes Walmart’s Flipkart and Amazon.
Future Group, which operates over 1,500 retail outlets, including 285 hypermarket-format Big Bazaar stores across India, will start the service in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru and will subsequently expand it to 150 cities.
“This exercise will start with Big Bazaar but will extend to our other retail formats as well,” a senior Future Group executive told TOI.
In addition, the country’s second-largest brick-and-mortar retailer recently announced a mega-discount sale at its stores to be held this month after a gap of more than a year.
“This two-hour delivery service will let customers order fashion late in the evening and wear it to office next day, or order a new dining set in the afternoon and serve on it to guests at dinner get-together,” said Kishore Biyani, founder and group CEO at Future Group. “A quick and fast home delivery need not just be limited to food products.”
While consumers have been complaining about empty shelves and limited stock at Big Bazaar stores in several pockets across the country, the group’s fresh retail initiatives have been kickstarted with a push from Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Retail, which has entered into an agreement with the Future Group to buy its retail, wholesale and logistics assets for Rs 24,700 crore.
TOI was the first to report that Reliance Retail’s online platform, Jiomart will supply goods to Future Group as one of its largest vendors.
The Reliance-Future deal is currently stuck in the Supreme Court after Amazon, which owns 49% in an unlisted Future Group company, Future Coupons, dragged the Future Group to court for allegedly breaching contracts by aligning with Reliance Retail, India’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer.



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