Future Group may list home furnishing arm on Friday

Representative Image (Photo: Shutterstock)
Future Group's home furnishing arm Praxis Home Retail may be listed on Friday, said sources familiar with the development.  Praxis was formed by de-merging the furnishing store chain HomeTown and the group’s on-line furnishing arm Fabfurnish, from Future Retail this year. Investors will get 1 share of Praxis Home for every 20 share held in Future Retail as per scheme of arrangement announced last month.

Company executives declined to comment. Last week logistics arm of the group Future Supply Chain (FSC) floated its IPO its listing should also happen soon. The company has been on a reorganizing spree over the past year with a number of mergers and acquisitions such as Bharti Retail, Nilgiris and HyperCity besides some strategic de-mergers within the group.

Earlier this year, Future Group CEO Kishore Biyani had said how the company had “burnt their fingers” on e-commerce business and would not be venturing into it for another couple of years.  Parent company Future Retail had suffered up to Rs 250 crore loss following an attempt to take their business online. However, less than 6 months later the company has redesigned itself into a data-rich, technology friendly avatar.

The company recently announced plans to leverage its huge database of consumer information coupled with inputs from tech companies like Google and Facebook to funnel out relevant consumer data on its digital enabled services called Tathastu or Retail 3.0.

“We are also engaging with Twitter, Google and Youtube among others to transform a lot of the online (shoppers) traffic to offline stores,” said Rakesh Biyani, joint MD, Future Retail, discussing their digital transformation at the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) summit in Mumbai, today.

Biyani’s presence at the event, addressed by Accenture, IBM and Google among others, highlighted the company’s arrival on the “technology landscape”. He stressed on the need to use data to help cut down last mile delivery costs to business. He added that the company is using a number of measures to reduce costs borne by the end consumer.

Future Retail competes closely with Reliance Retail in the organized retail space with both chains occupying roughly 13 million square feet of retail space across the country. Interestingly, the telecom arm of Reliance Industries, Jio has lately been looking at a similar data-enabled model of reaching the local Kirana stores through tie-ups with FMCG brands to offer discounts to users.

The retail market size was worth around $672 billion last year according to CARE reports, of which barely 10 per cent is organized retail, in India. Within organized retail, food & beverage holds around 70 per cent of the sector, followed by apparel (11 per cent) and personal care (8 per cent).

“Our objective is to ensure that we take the maximum benefit out of the implementation of GST. There is a scope to bring in a lot of value and reduce the inefficiencies that exist in the system today,” said Biyani.

The Indian Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF) estimates the retail industry to grow at a CAGR of over 17 per cent over the next 4 years and reach $1,300 billion by 2020. in the last two years, the retail industry has been growing at about 12 per cent respectively on account of favorable demographics, higher income levels, easy credit availability, etc. according to CARE reports.

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