Agrani takes franchisee route to beef up retail presence

The company is targeting a total of 2,500 retail stores by 2006, of which 100 will be company-owned and the others franchised out

Agrani Convergence Ltd (ACL), an ASC Enterprise (part of the Essel Group), is stepping up its expansion plans across India. The company plans to spread its tentacles across the country taking the franchisee route. While ACL targets a total of 2,500 retail stores by 2006, 100 will be company-owned and the others franchised out. In fact, by end of the current financial year the number of outlets is expected to touch 64, up from the current 26. If all goes as planned, says Pankaj Mohindroo, CEO, ACL, "The company will clock a revenue of Rs 90 crore by 2006."

ACL's Agrani Switch is a multi-format, countrywide chain of retail stores peddling Telecom, IT & Learning, Media & Entertainment (TIME) products and services under one roof. It offers branded products and services such as cellular phones and services, pagers and paging services, basic landline telephone instruments (and services when they open up), fax machines and Internet access kits.

The 26 Agrani Switch superstores are located in Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Chandigarh, Ludhiana, Amritsar Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Udaipur, Lucknow and Kanpur. The company is 'seriously' looking at three more cities - Hyderabad, Kolkata and Pathankot.

"Agrani services the needs of large sections of society by creating a powerful retail brand Agrani Switch. ACL has begun to leverage its wide network and its brands to encash other retailing, reselling and distribution opportunities. With this vision, ACL will achieve its presence through physical stores in such product categories that contribute about 80 per cent to India's GDP," says Mohindroo.

In addition to the physical retail chain, ACL has also established a parallel channel of corporate retail. Agrani Switch Direct Catalogue is the corporate channel to address the technology needs of corporates, SMEs and SOHOs, offering them all the Switch benefits at their desktop.

ACL has also established a nationwide technology service brand Agrani Switch Technoaid as a one-stop service point for all technology products to meet the service requirements of customers nationwide. The service is backed by service support engineers at the Technoaid Service Centres at key locations and service points at every Switch store across India. © 2002 agencyfaqs!

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