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Jul, 01 2007

Bata heading towards franchising

Bata India Ltd, which began revamping its stores into a four-layer model four years ago, has decided to get franchisees to run its new stores. It will set up 200 such retail stores over the next two years, in a bid to expand without increasing headcount.

Bata India Ltd, which began revamping its stores into a four-layer model four years ago, has decided to get franchisees to run its new stores. It will set up 200 such retail stores over the next two years, in a bid to expand without increasing headcount.

The shoe major will also refurbish 500 old stores and close down 70 unviable ones out of the 1,100 it owns. The company has also decided to merge its subsidiary, Bata Properties Ltd, which owns some 15 stores, with itself.

There are now about 35 stores that are run according to the new franchisee model, which the company calls the K-model. It further plans to operate most of the upcoming stores through this method.

Bata India aims to be present in the best malls that are coming up across the country. The looks of most of its stores are being modified to put them on par with those in Singapore or Malaysia. The company is also making its product range trendy and will expand it to address the needs of its women customers.

Most of the Bata stores are now open 365 days till late hours 'to compete better and serve those who prefer shopping late' while its sales force is being trained to provide customers a better shopping experience.

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