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Home > Business > PTI > Report

Bharti-Wal-Mart launch to be low key: Sunil Mittal

September 17, 2007 18:19 IST
Last Updated: September 17, 2007 18:20 IST

Bharti Group's retail venture in partnership with the world's biggest retailer Wal-Mart is going to be a low-key affair with its launch planned in phases over a period of time.

"We will not go for a national launch. It would be in phases similar to our telecom business model," Bharti Group chairman and managing director Sunil Bharti Mittal saidĀ in Kolkata on Monday.

Bharti Group, seeking to capture the retail boom, has planned to invest $2-2.5 billionĀ till 2015 in the sector. It has entered into an equal joint venture with Wal-Mart for the wholesale cash and carry business, but the front-end retail would be handled by the company alone.

"Bharti will be in the frontline and Wal-Mart in cash and carry," Mittal said, adding that this model is likely to remain till the government eases FDI norms in retail.

In the cash and carry business, a company operates like a bulk dealer on behalf of several manufacturers and sells the merchandise to retail traders.

Speaking about roll-out of retail or cash and carry stores, Mittal told reporters on the sidelines of CII national council, "we are now working on the back-end issues."

Asked about West Bengal plan, Mittal said it was not on the agenda at this point of time.

Reacting to West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee's comment about restricting FDI in retail outlets not dealing in foodgrain and are located outside the city limits, Mittal said supporting organised retail without foreign direct investment was the start of a process.

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