SPAR launches first Hypermarket in Pune

SPAR, the world's largest independent food retail chain spread across 34 countries, unveiled its first hypermarket in Pune, spread over 37000 sq. ft on a single floor. Max Hypermarkets India Pvt. Ltd. (part of the Dubai based Landmark Group) has a licence agreement with SPAR International to open SPAR stores in India. This large-format SPAR store is located at the Inorbit Mall, Vimman Nagar, Pune. This is the 7th SPAR store in India, with the other 6 located in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mangalore and Delhi.

SPAR Pune storeSPAR Pune store

Mr. Viney Singh on the Left and Mr. David Michael Moore on the rightMr. Viney Singh on the Left and Mr. David Michael Moore on the right

Bengaluru, Karnataka, April 6, 2011 /India PRwire/ -- SPAR, the world's largest independent food retail chain spread across 34 countries, unveiled its first hypermarket in Pune, spread over 37000 sq. ft on a single floor. Max Hypermarkets India Pvt. Ltd. (part of the Dubai based Landmark Group) has a licence agreement with SPAR International to open SPAR stores in India. This large-format SPAR store is located at the Inorbit Mall, Vimman Nagar, Pune. This is the 7th SPAR store in India, with the other 6 located in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mangalore and Delhi.

SPAR promises truly international shopping standards at Indian prices. The customer experience is unparalleled. The international store design and layouts at SPAR promise the customer an easy and hassle-free shopping experience. For ease of shopping, the categories on offer are merchandised in "worlds" i.e Children, Living, Kitchen, Gifting, small appliances, Fresh produce (including fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, delicatessen and an in-store bakery), speciality food concepts, Staples, Health and Beauty , FMCG food, and Wine and Beer.

The SPAR hypermarket has the widest range of over 24,500 products on offer in a single store catering to the needs of quality and value-conscious customers. The SPAR "Every Day Low Price" policy and "Best Deal" promotions guarantee value which Pune customers are new to.

Speaking on the occasion, Viney Singh, Managing Director, Max Hypermarket India Pvt. Ltd, said "We hope to take the shopping experience in Pune to a new level. At SPAR we get international best practices and adapt them to best suit needs of the local shopper. Also because of our sharp pricing, promotions, loyalty programme, the largest fresh produce section and customer-centric service, our customers look forward to shopping with us every week."

SPAR India has the dual advantage of their affiliations with both SPAR International and the Landmark Group. SPAR International provides unmatched expertise in the field of food retailing combined with best practices in designing and merchandising. The path-breaking Landmark Group, whose stores are category killers in non-food retail, provides for superior sourcing and product assortments.

Freshness, Choice, Value and Service are the Brand Pillars of SPAR and form the core of SPAR's retail philosophy.

Choice - one stop shop for all consumer needs

SPAR has the widest possible range of products to offer to the consumer - about 24,500 SKUs of both food and non food. Be it fruits & vegetables, meat, grocery, dairy, delicatessen products, wines and beer, small accessories, kitchen requirements, IT accessories, magazines - all available under one roof. The quality of the products and range available in each section redefines industry standards. One can choose from over 20 varieties of staples, 35 varieties of cheese from various countries and 40 varieties of fish..

For the convenience of customers, SPAR's merchandise has been divided into 'worlds'. The Children's World offers everything required for infants to pre teens be it toys, board games, books stationery, sporting goods, party requirements and gifting options. The Living World provides for all home needs from linen, blankets, rugs and carpets, pillows and comforters, bean bags, school bags and laptop bags, ironing boards and ladders, electrical and garden supplies as well as auto accessories and do - it - yourself products. An excellent range of inner wear and ready to stitch materials for men and women are also available. The Kitchen World has every conceivable requirement for the kitchen from gas stoves to pressure cookers, non stick ware, plastics, crockery and cutlery, dinner sets, et al. There will also be a large range of imported items to choose from as well as small appliances like microwaves, mixers, juicers and grinders, OTGs, irons, rice cookers, water purifiers and IT accessories.

The hypermarket has some unique aspects not found in other stores. Fresh juices, Indian savouries, fruit salads, Indian sweets, chaats and buttermilks that energise customers while shopping will be available to be consumed on the spot. There are special counters selling pickles, batter and loose teas. A new concept section will be introduced shortly for the first time at this hypermarket: a range of premium imported chocolates from The Cocoa Trees, a Singapore based retail chocolate boutique chain. With over 40 international renowned brands including Toblerone, M&M's, Droste, Swiss Delice, Belgian, Hawaiian Host, Ritter Sport, Goldkenn and Hershey's, the products at The Cocoa Trees concept counter are ready treats for the discriminating palate. Feodora and Neuhaus promise to satiate even the most discerning chocolate connoisseurs

The SPAR Bakery is a delight where shoppers can buy freshly baked breads, savouries, cakes, pastries, gateaux, tarts and much more as well as place orders for desserts and cakes for birthday parties. Customers can place their orders for cakes and pick them up once they finish shopping. The bakery range includes a very wide array of breads including health breads, cakes and pastries both with and without eggs as well as desserts which include gateaux, trifles and mousses at very reasonable price points.

Fresh - farm to fork

The SPAR Fresh produce section is the largest amongst hypermarket players in India. At SPAR the effort is to maximise procurement of fresh produce directly from the source, i.e. the farmers. The bulk of the fruits and vegetables are directly procured and maintained at the desired temperature to preserve quality, freshness and retain nutritive value. To ensure day-long freshness and quality of the highest standards, SPAR uses in-store state of art technology. Cold rooms at every store for each category of fresh produce ensure that customers purchases are indeed "SPAR Fresh". SPAR maintains strict international standards in sourcing non-vegetarian products. The fish counter at SPAR offers a wide range of sea as well as fresh water fish that are cleaned and cut to customer specifications and then packed in ice thus ensuring freshness till the customer's doorstep.

Freshness is one of the most important aspects that shoppers look for in every product they buy and the emphasis that SPAR places on the same is unparalleled. SPAR, in fact, plans to bring in value to the consumer by increasing the number of fresh lines across its food and beverage concepts.

Service - an experience that will bring you back to SPAR

SPAR assures its customers world-class service. The store has been designed in collaboration with design team from SPAR International keeping the experience and convenience of the customers in mind. Wide aisles for easy trolley movement, high ceilings which give an airy and open ambience, 25 cash tills for fast billing (SPAR maintains the highest ratio of cash tills to retail space in India), the token system at the fish counter for streamlined orders as well as separate billing system at the non-vegetarian counters keeping in mind the religious sensitivities of individuals.

The store also has several customer service representatives per square feet to help shoppers. The loose grains and private labels are processed at SPAR's HACCP (Hazard and Critical Control Point) compliant facilities, which lay complete emphasis on food safety. Though the store has an international feel, the offerings are sourced keeping in mind the shopping requirements of the local population, so as to provide familiarity and comfort to its shoppers. Therefore, from rice and dals to papads and pickles, the ranges are varied catering to regional tastes.

Value - lowest retail prices in Pune

As part of SPAR's Every Day Low Pricing program more than 650 plus essential grocery items will be sold at the lowest retail prices in Pune throughout the year.

SPAR also provides the best value for money through its various promotions. The 'Best Deal' offers give customers some of the best bargains going up to almost 75% off. These are the best in class vis-a-vis competition. This offer is a result of SPAR's customer need analysis expertise over the last 36 years.

Spar - Private labels

The focus in recent times has been on the development of the SPAR India private label and much headway has been made in the R & D and launch of these products.

SPAR's private label began with a wide range of staples, spices and dry fruits under the Select, Value and Best Price categories. Other products include dry groceries, snacks (namkeens), cornflakes, ketchup, plum cake & leaf tea and a cleaning range of toilet cleaner, glass cleaner, phenyl, scrubbers and liquid dishwash. In this financial year, instant noodles, a mango drink and more namkeen products will be added. SPAR Baby Diapers, detergent powder & bar, dishwash bar, floor cleaners & air fresheners will also become available. The financial year should end with about 50 FMCG SKUs and then increase to 150 by April 2012.

The second category is fresh grocery where pre-packed bakery products under "SPAR Fresh Bakes" include a range of breads, cookies and cakes. Pre-packed organic vegetables under "SPAR Organics" are also now available for customers.

In the non food category, a large number of SKUs have been added in addition to pressure cookers, non stick ware, towels, curtains, bed sheets, quilts and comforters. A range of dress materials under the label SPAR Diva is available as well as belts, handkerchiefs, socks, micro fibre pillows and cushions, A set of 6 glasses as well as 21 and 32 piece melamine dinner sets are on the shelves as well as a multi kitchen knife set. Co branding with Bombay Dyeing for men's ready to stitch wear and with Dukes Leisure wear is also underway.

The SPAR food private labels currently account for 16% of the total food sales. This is likely to grow to 25% by March 2013.

Notes to Editor

About SPAR India and its plans:

SPAR Hypermarkets and supermarkets in India is the result of a license agreement between the Dubai based Landmark Group's Max Hypermarkets India Pvt. Ltd. and SPAR International. SPAR is the world's largest independent food retail chain and is present in 33 countries with 12, 680 stores and a turnover of 28 billion euros.

Max Hypermarkets is responsible for the entire business operation - from capex outlay to day to day operations. Management control also rests with Max Hypermarkets. SPAR provides knowledge transfer and brings with it best practices in international retailing and technical expertise to ensure that the brand is being accurately represented, whilst ensuring that the local partner retains their financial independence to deliver the best solution in each market. SPAR International plays an integral support role in the development of the hypermarket format in India.

SPAR currently has three stores in Bangalore and one each in Hyderabad, Mangalore and Delhi. By 2013, SPAR will open about 30 hypermarkets across India and clock revenues of Rs 1700 crores. This will entail an investment of Rs 550 crores.

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