Walmart’s 23rd cash and carry store in India, which was opened in Visakhapatnam today. (Photographer: Nishant Sharma/BloombergQuint)

Walmart India To Spend Rs 2,000 Crore To More Than Double Store Count

Walmart Inc. wants to take its India store count to 50 in the next two years.

To achieve that, the retail giant—which currently operates 23 stores in India—said it intends to spend $270 million, or around Rs 2,000 crore. “We spend about $10 million a store, so you estimate,” Krish Iyer, chief executive officer and president of Walmart India, said in an interview during the inaugural of its latest store in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, today.

Iyer said that Walmart already has 24 stores in its pipeline. “Some of them are in various stages of construction. We’re also in the process of signing up six more (stores).”

And Andhra Pradesh will remain crucial to the retailer’s plans. “Andhra will have seven stores in three years, the maximum,” Iyer said, adding that it will open stores in temple town of Tirupati and Kurnool.

He claimed that almost all of Walmart’s stores in India have broken even at the store level, with focus only on single format of cash-and-carry stores. “We aren’t looking at smaller stores.”

Walmart had recently opened two fulfillment centers—also known as dark stores—in India on pilot basis. It plans to open a third such centre at Hyderabad next year.

Flipkart-Walmart Integration

Iyer reiterated that Walmart and Flipkart, the homegrown e-commerce platform that it acquired this year, will continue to operate independently and “exchange learning”.

Walmart, Iyer said, will share its experience in logistics and merchandising with Flipkart, but won’t sell its private labels on the e-tailer.

The reporter was in Visakhapatnam at the invitation of Walmart.

Watch video for the full interaction