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India’s first 7-Eleven store will be in Mumbai; Kishore Biyani’s Future Group working on products

Prachi Gupta

US-based convenience store chain 7-Eleven is all set to make its India debut this financial year and the first store will be opened in Mumbai, Kishore Biyani told CNBC TV18. The small-format convenience store chain could compete directly with neighbourhood mom-and-pop stores, unlike the large format or hyper retail stores such as Big Bazaar or Reliance Fresh. Future Group is developing many products with 7-Eleven for the Indian market, Kishore Biyani said. 7-Eleven, one of the 100 most valuable brands in the world, signed an agreement with the Kishore Biyani s group earlier this year to launch operations in the country.

SHME Food Brands Private Limited, which is an arm of Future Retail, signed a master franchise agreement with the 7-Eleven and it will develop and operate its stores. 7-Eleven is unlike Big Bazaar, Reliance Fresh and other retail chains in the way that these are neighbourhood stores which require comparatively smaller areas to operate and could give tough competition to traditional mom and pop stores.

7-Eleven will bring beverages, snacks and immediately consumable fresh foods among other products initially to the Indian market. Under the agreement, 7-Eleven stores will be set up by the Future Group. The Kishore Biyani s chain will also convert some of its existing stores and operations into the US brand. In the statement, Future Group said that the 7-Eleven s entry into India will modernise the small-retail environment and bring greater convenience to shoppers.

Currently, the US-based convenience store has a footprint of more than 67,000 stores in 17 countries. 7-Eleven is among the most iconic global brands in the food retail landscape, said Kishore Biyani, Founder & Group CEO, Future Group. The venture will offer Indian customers greater convenience and choices, within their own neighbourhood, he added in the statement.

Future Group has also launched Dreamery in a joint venture with Fonterra under Fonterra Future Dairy. Through this, the company will sell Dahi, UHT Toned Milk, Chocolate and Strawberry Milkshakes, Future Group announced in a statement on Wednesday.

Future Retail already has an expansive retail chain in the country which includes Big Bazaar, Central, Food Bazaar, Easyday and Brand Factory. It also manages the distribution of fashion and lifestyle brands such as Clarks, Converse, DJ&C and Urban Yoga.