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Metro Cash & Carry now in Mumbai
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Date of posting: 11-05-08
      Metro Cash & Carry, the international leader in self-service wholesaling, opened its first outlet in Mumbai last Wednesday, which is the fourth in India. Two have been opened earlier in Bangalore, and one in Hyderabad, since Metro came to India in 2003. The Mumbai location is at Neptune’s Magnet Mall in Bhandup.

      The new wholesale center in Mumbai has a selling space of 6,500 square meters (70,000 square feet). Due to scarce availability of appropriate real estate, the center was built by Metro itself, using local contractors and local material. On average, a new Metro wholesale center is an investment of about €20 million (Rs. 1.26 billion).

      Metro said that it is also a premier for the company to open an outlet in an Indian shopping mall, which was chosen for being in the urban center and thus very close to the customers. “We have to prove our flexibility and adaptability, also in terms of the location”, Martin Dlouhy, Managing Director of Metro Cash & Carry India, said in that regard.

      Metro Cash & Carry wholesale centers are open exclusively for professional customers like hotels, restaurants and small retailers like Kirana stores, and so assortment and services are tailored to the special needs of this target groups. Dlouhy is convinced that Metro’s business-to-business concept would be very successful also in Mumbai, as he sees a vast potential for the wholesale centers in this metropolis. The product range comprises more than 18,000 articles, 8,000 food and 10,000 non food products which are needed by the target groups to run their own operations.

      In Metro centers, all professional buyers have to register themselves and get a customer card, which is an entry card into the center. Private end consumers have no access and cannot buy anything.

       In a release, Metro was highlighting the benefits for Kirana stores, which can use Metro as their warehouse and utilize their free capital for their businesses, rather than lock it up in inventory. The new center with its extended opening hours from 6am to 10 pm would help the professional customers to increase their competitiveness. “Especially Kirana stores can benefit from our presence”, Dlouhy said.

      A Metro center coming to an area has also positive effects on the local economy. Apart from the construction business which Metro had initiated, there are more positive effects on employment, the local industry and farmers. Metro says that a wholesale center like the one in Bhandup provides around 450 local direct and indirect employment opportunities. And from the goods displayed in Mumbai, around 95 percent would originate from local producers and distributors. Also, Metro said that more than 40,000 sheep farmers as well as 1,150 fishing crews from India were trained. Metro helped to vaccinate and de-worm around 1 million sheep and goats.

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