About Interstate Shipping in India

Unable to ship your products on time to your customers? Are your shipments returning to you after getting stuck atInter-State Checkpoints? Having difficulty in understanding the rules and finding the interstate shipping forms?

If these are the kind of questions that are troubling you with interstate shipping, then we have something incredibly awesome to share with you!

Logistics is crucial for any online store. Delivering your customers’ purchases on time reflects on your store’sefficiency and reliability. Delay in delivering the products is a risk you cannot afford as an online store entrepreneur.

But, living in a big country like India, rules change from State to State. Understanding these rules and finding the respective forms can be a very cumbersome task. That’s why, we bring you an exclusive table to help you sort out the necessary forms to be filled while scheduling a shipment.

 

   Interstate Shipping Forms and Requirements

Sr. No. List of destination State Business to Consumer (B2C) or Consumer to Consumer (C2C) Business to Business (B2B)
Type of statutory Levy Who is liable/ can pay statutory levy Road permit /paperwork requirement (INR) DOM paperwork exemption limit Status of statutory Levy Paperwork Requirement State VAT website
1 Andhra Pradesh Nil Shipper Invoice Nil
No Statutory levy is paid upfront
CI + VAT Form x/600 www.apct.gov.in
2 Andaman & Nicobar Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.and.nic.in
3 Arunachal Pradesh Entry Tax Consignee CI +DG -01 (TPT doc) <10,000 CI + DG 01 www.arunachalpradesh.nic.in
4 Assam Entry Tax Consignee CI+Form 62 <20,000 CI + VAT Form 61 www.tax.assam.gov.in
5 Bihar VAT Consignee CI+ Form D IX – on line Nil CI + VAT Form D IX www.biharcommercialtax.in
6 Chandigarh Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.chandigarh.gov.in
7 Chattisgarh Nil Shipper Invoice Nil CI & Declaration from Cnee www.comtax.cg.nic.in
8 Dadra & Nager Haveli Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.dnh.nic.in
9 Daman & Diu Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.daman.nic.in
10 Delhi Nil Shipper Invoice Nil CI + T2 www.dvat.gov.in
11 Goa Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.goacomtax.gov.in
12 Gujarat Nil CI + VAT Form 403 Nil CI + VAT Form 403 www.commercialtax.gujarat.gov.in
13 Haryana Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.haryanatax.com
14 Himachal Pradesh Entry Tax Consignee / Carrier Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.hptax.gov.in
15 Jammu & Kashmir Entry Tax Consignee / Carrier Shipper Invoice <5,000 CI + VAT From 65 www.jkcomtax.gov.in
16 Jharkhand Nil CI + VAT Form 502 Nil CI +VAT Form 504 G www.jharkhandcomtax.gov.in
17 Karnataka Nil Invoice & Declaration Nil CI + e-Sugam www.ctax.kar.nic.in
18 Kerala Nil CI + Form 16 <5,000 Shipper Invoice www.keralataxes.gov.in
19 Lakshadweep Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.lakshadweep.nic.in
20 Madhya Pradesh Nil CI+ VAT Form 50 online Nil CI + VAT Form 49 online www.mptax.mp.gov.in
21 Maharashtra Octroi Carrier Shipper Invoice <150 Shipper Invoice + LBT/Octroi www.mahavat.gov.in
22 Manipur Nil CI + VAT Form 37 Nil CI + VAT Form 27 www.manipurvat.gov.in
22 Meghalaya Nil CI+ Special permit Nil CI + VAT Form 40 www.megvat.gov.in
23 Mizoram Nil CI + VAT Form 34 Nil CI+VAT From 33 www.zotax.nic.in
24 Nagaland Nil CI+ VAT Form 23 CI+ VAT Form 23 (online) www.nagalandtax.nic.in
26 Orissa Entry Tax* Consignee Shipper Invoice Nil CI+ VAT Form 402 (online ) www.odishatax.gov.in
27 Pondicherry Nil Shipper Invoice NA Shipper Invoice gst.puducherry.gov.in
28 Punjab Entry Tax Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.pextax.com
29 Rajasthan Entry Tax Consignee CI + Declaration Nil CI + VAT Form 47/47A ( online ) www.rajtax.gov.in
30 Sikkim Nil CI + VAT Form 26 Nil CI+ VAT From 25 www.sikkimtax.gov.in
31 Tamil Nadu Nil Shipper Invoice Nil Shipper Invoice www.tnvat.gov.in
32 Telangana Nil Shipper Invoice Nil CI + VAT Form x/600 www.tgct.gov.in
323 Tripura Nil CI+ VAT Permit CI+ VAT FROM XXIV www.taxes.tripura.gov.in
34 Uttar Pradesh Nil CI + VAT Form 39 Nil CI +VATe-sancharan comtax.up.nic.in
35 Uttrakhand Nil CI + Vat Form 17 <5,000 CI + VAT Form 16 comtax.uk.gov.in
36 West Bengal Entry Tax* Carrier Shipper Invoice + VAT Form 50A Nil CI + VAT Form 50A www.wbcomtax.nic.in

From this table, find the State to which you are shipping your products. Cross check the conditions to know what form is required. Get the forms from the links given in the table. The links to the state government have been provided in the table.

How and when do you use these forms?

You will need to provide the filled forms to the person arriving for the pick up. The logistic company will produce this form for you at the check points. Rest assured, as your products travel safe to reach your customers at far off places.

Thus, you can now send your products to your lovely customers with ease and make sure the shipments don’t return because of a lack of documents. Happy selling! 🙂

Did we miss anything? Do let us know.

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The Five Major Flows in Supply Chain

Supply Chain is the management of flows. There are Five major flows in any supply chain : product flow, financial flow, information flow, value flow & risk flow.

The product flow includes the movement of goods from a supplier to a customer, as well as any customer returns or service needs. The financial flow consists of credit terms, payment schedules, and consignment and title ownership arrangements. The information flow involves product fact sheet, transmitting orders, schedules, and updating the status of delivery.

THE PRODUCT FLOW :

Product Flow includes movement of goods from supplier to consumer (internal as well as external), as well as dealing with customer service needs such as input materials or consumables or services like housekeeping. Product flow also involves returns / rejections (Reverse Flow).

In a typical industry situation, there will a supplier, manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler, retailer and consumer. The consumer may even be an internal customer in the same organisation. For example in a fabrication shop many kinds of raw steel are fabricated into different building components in cutting, general machining, welding centres and then are assembled to order on a flatbed for shipment to a customer. Flow in such plant is from one process / assembly section to the other having relationship as a supplier and consumer (internal). Acquisition is taking place at each stage from the previous stage along the entire flow in the supply chain.

In the supply chain the goods and services generally flow downstream (forward) from the source or point of origin to consumer or point of consumption. There is also a backward (or upstream) flow of materials, mainly associated with product returns.

THE FINANCIAL FLOWS:

 

The financial and economic aspect of supply chain management (SCM) shall be considered from two perspectives. First, from the cost and investment perspective and second aspect based on from flow of funds. Costs and investments add on as moving forward in the supply chain.  The optimization of total supply chain cost, therefore, contributes directly (and often very   significantly) to   overall profitability.  Similarly, optimization of supply chain investment contributes to the optimisation of return on the capital employed in a company. In a supply chain, from the ultimate consumer of the product back down through the chain there will be flow of funds. Financial funds (Revenues) flow  from  the  final consumer, who  is usually the only source of “real” money in  a  supply  chain,  back  through   the other   links  in   the   chain   (typically retailers,  distributors,  processors  and suppliers).

In any organization, the supply chain has both Accounts Payable (A/P) and Accounts Receivable (A/R) activities and includes payment schedules, credit, and additional financial arrangements – and funds flow in opposite directions: receivables (funds inflow) and payables (funds outflow). The working capital cycle also provides a useful representation of financial flows in a supply chain. Great opportunities and challenges therefore lie ahead in managing financial flows in supply chains. The integrated management of this flow is a key SCM activity, and one which has a direct impact on the cash flow position and profitability of the company.

THE INFORMATION FLOW :

Supply chain management involves a great deal of diverse information–bills of materials, product data, descriptions and pricing, inventory levels, customer and order information, delivery scheduling, supplier and distributor information, delivery status, commercial documents, title of goods, current cash flow and financial information etc.–and it can require a lot of communication and coordination with suppliers, transportation vendors, subcontractors and other parties. Information flows in the supply chain are bidirectional. Faster and better information flow enhances Supply Chain effectiveness and Information Technology (IT) greatly transformed the performance.

THE VALUE FLOW:

A supply chain has a series of value creating processes spanning over entire chain in order to provide added value to the end consumer. At each stage there are physical flows relating to production, distribution; while at each stage, there is some addition of value to the products or services.  Even at retailer stage though the product doesn’t get transformed or altered, he is providing value added services like making the product available at convenient place in small lots.

These can be referred to as value chains because as the product moves from one point to another, it gains value. A value chain is a series of interconnected activities which are required to bring a product or service from conception, through the different phases of production (involving a combination of physical transformation and the input of various product services), delivery to final customers, and final disposal after use. That is supply chain is closely interwoven with value chain. Thus value chain and supply chain are complimenting and supplementing each other. In practice supply chain with value flow are more complex involving more than one chain and these channels can be more than one originating supply point and final point of consumption.

In chain at each such activity there are costs, revenues, and asset values are assigned. Either through controlling / regulating cost drivers better than before or better than competitors or by reconfiguring the value chain, sustainable competitive advantage is achieved.

THE FLOW OF RISK :

Risks in supply chain are due to various uncertain elements broadly covered under demand, supply, price, lead time, etc.  Supply chain risk is a potential occurrence of an incident or failure to seize opportunities of supplying the customer in which its outcomes result in financial loss for the whole supply chain. Risks therefore can appear as any kind of disruptions, price volatility, and poor perceived quality of the product or service, process / internal quality failures, deficiency of physical infrastructure, natural disaster or any event damaging the reputation of the firm. Risk factors also include cash flow constraints, inventory financing and delayed cash payment. Risks can be external or internal and move either way with product or financial or information or value flow.

External risks can be driven by events either upstream or downstream in the supply chain:

  • Demand risks – related to unpredictable or misunderstood customer or end-customer demand.
  • Supply risks – related to any disturbances to the flow of product within your supply chain.
  • Environment risks – that originate from shocks outside the supply chain.
  • Business risks – related to factors such as suppliers’ financial or management stability.
  • Physical risks – related to the condition of a supplier’s physical facilities.

Internal risks are driven by events within company control:

  • Manufacturing risks – caused by disruptions of internal operations or processes.
  • Business risks – caused by changes in key personnel, management, reporting structures, or business processes.
  • Planning and control risks – caused by inadequate assessment and planning, and ineffective management.
  • Mitigation and contingency risks –  caused by not putting in place contingencies.

INTEGRATION OF FLOWS IN SUPPLY CHAIN :

 

Supply chain management integrates key business processes from end user through original suppliers, manufacturer, trading, and third-party logistics partners in a supply chain. Integration is a critical success factor in a dynamic market environment and is prerequisite for enhancing value in the system and for effective performance of the supply chain by sharing and utilization of resources, assets, facilities, processes; sharing of information, knowledge, systems between different tiers in the chain and is vital for the success of each chain in improving lead-times, process execution efficiencies and costs, quality of the process, inventory costs, and information transfer in a supply chain. Integration leads to better collaboration for synchronized production scheduling, collaborative product development, collaborative demand and logistic planning. Also with increased information visibility and relevant operational knowledge and data exchange, integrated supply chain partners can be more responsive to volatile demand resulting from frequent changes in competition, technology, regulations etc. (capacity for flexibility). Integration is required not only for economic benefits but also for compliances in terms of social and community, diversity, environment, ethics, financial responsibility, human rights, safety, organizational policies, industry code of conduct, various national / international laws, regulations, standards and issues.

 

To achieve superior supply chain performance (cost, quality, flexibility and time performance) require multi-lateral integration :  Internal / External integration;  Functional integration, Geographical integration; Integration in Chains and networks; and Integration through IT. The integration even goes beyond to include supplier’s supplier and customer’s customer to leverage the power of the “network,” beyond their own.

The Bullwhip Effect in Supply Chain

The bullwhip effect is a distribution channel phenomenon in which forecasts yield supply chain inefficiencies. It refers to increasing swings in inventory in response to shifts in customer demand as you move further up the supply chain.

bullwhip effect.jpg

Causes of Bullwhip effect

The bullwhip effect is mainly caused by three underlying problems: 1) a lack of information, 2) the structure of the supply chain and 3) a lack of collaboration.

The three causes can be identified in an interactive session with the students by discussing the beergame experiences and then be corroborated with insights from practice and the literature.

1) Lack of information

In the beergame no information except for the order amount is perpetuated up the supply chain. Hence, most information about customer demand is quickly lost upstream in the supply chain.

With these characteristics the beergame simulates supply chains with low levels of trust, where only little information is being shared between the parties.

Without actual customer demand data, all forecasting has to rely solely on the incoming orders at each supply chain stage. In reality, in such a situation traditional forecasting methods and stock keeping strategies contribute to creating the bullwhip effect.

2) Supply chain structure

The supply chain structure itself contributes to the bullwhip effect. The longer the lead time, i.e. the longer it takes for an order to travel upstream and the subsequent delivery to travel downstream, the more aggravated the bullwhip effect is likely to be.

With traditional ordering, the point in time where an order is typically placed (the order point) is usually calculated by multiplying the forecasted demand with the lead time plus the safety stock amount, so that an order is placed so far in advance as to ensure service level during the time until the delivery is expected to arrive.

Hence, the longer the lead time is, the more pronounced an order will be as an reaction to an increase in forecasted demand (especially in conjunction with updating the safety stock levels, see above), which again contributes to the bullwhip effect.

3) Local optimisation

Local optimisation, in terms of local forecasting and individual cost optimisation, and a lack of cooperation are at the heart of the bullwhip problem.

A good example for local optimisation is the batch order phenomenon. In practice, ordering entails fix cost, e.g. ordering in full truck loads is cheaper then ordering smaller amounts. Furthermore, many suppliers offer volume discounts when ordering larger amounts.

Hence, there is a certain incentive for individual players to hold back orders and only place aggregate orders. This behaviour however aggravates the problem of demand forecasting, because very little information about actual demand is transported in such batch orders.

And batch ordering, of course, contributes directly to the bullwhip effect by unnecessarily inflating the orders.

How to Minimize the Bullwhip Effect

The first step in minimizing the bullwhip effect is understanding customers’ demand planning and inventory consumption. Lack of demand visibility can be addressed by providing all key players in the supply chain with access to point of sale (POS) data. Suppliers and customers must then collaborate to improve  the quality and frequency of communication throughout the supply chain.

They also can share information through an arrangement such as vendor-managed inventory (VMI). Eliminating practices that cause demand spikes, such as order batching, also can help. The higher order cost associated with smaller or more frequent orders can be offset with Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and computer aided ordering (CAO).

Pricing strategies and policies can also help reduce the bullwhip effect. Eliminating incentives that cause customers to delay orders, such as volume transportation discounts, and addressing the causes of order cancellations or reductions can help create smoother ordering patterns. Offering products at stable and fair prices can prevent buying surges triggered by temporary promotional discounts. Special purchase contracts can be implemented to encourage ordering at regular intervals to better synchronize delivery and purchase.

How Price Undercutting happens via Wholesale Trade?

Wikipedia defines price undercutting as: ‘Price cutting, or undercutting, is a sales technique that reduces the retail prices to a level low enough to eliminate competition‘. It is obvious that price under-cutting happens mostly to boost volume sales. This article is about how undercutting works in the context of Indian FMCG.

Brief Overview of the supply-chain and the trade schemes

As mentioned in earlier posts, the typical distribution line for an FMCG product in your area looks like: Stockist -> Company Distributor -> Wholesaler -> Retailer  Or  Stockist -> Company Distributor -> RetailerTypically, the distributor gets a margin of about 6-8% and the retailer gets a margin of 10-15%.

Just like the way the FMCG company brings out various promotions to the end consumer, the company also introduces various trade schemes or trade promotions as incentives for all the partners in the supply-chain. Typically, the incentives are based on the quantity of the volume purchased or the value purchased. There are many different types of incentives such as, but the major ones are:

1. Quantity Purchase Schemes (QPS)

A few examples are below:

a).     Buy 25 pieces, get one piece free;  50 pieces, get 5 pieces free;  100 pieces, get 12 pieces free;  200 pieces, get 25 pieces free
b).    Buy 25 pieces, get 1% discount;  Buy 75 pieces, get 3.5% discount;  Buy 150 pieces, Get 7.5% discount

2. Value Purchase Schemes (VPS)

Example: Buy Rs.5000 get 4% discount,  Buy Rs.8000 get 7% discount, etc.

So, the formula seems simple: the more somebody buys a particular product the more the discount. Bargaining Power!

But, this is where the problem starts.

Undercutting by the Wholesaler

We shall walk through a common scenario of how undercutting happens.  For simplicity of math, lets say, a product has an MRP of Rs.15, and the retailer gets it for Rs.13.50 and the distributor gets it for Rs.12.50. Lets say the wholesaler also is getting at Rs.13 as he typically buys more. So, simply just say the distributor margin is Rs.1, the retailer margin is Rs.1.5 and the wholesaler has a margin of Rs.0.50.

Lets say Mr. Lal Babu is a a very big wholesaler who caters to certain number of retailers locally. When the distributor goes to Mr. Lal Babu he says there is a new scheme. Lets say the scheme is:  Buy 75 pieces, get 3.5% discount;  Buy 150 pieces, Get 7.5% discount.

So, Mr. Lal Babu decides to buy 150 pieces. So, apart from his actual cost, he gets a bonus 7.5% discount. So, instead of buying the product at Rs.13, Mr. Lal Babu buys it at Rs.12 (7.5% discount over Rs.13). So, now instead of selling it to the retailer at the usual price of Rs.13.5, assume Mr. Lal Babu sells it to the retailer at Rs.12.50, taking his usual margin.  The company distributor is selling the same product at Rs.13.5 to the retailer. So, you see what the problem is?

The retailer would be attracted to buy from Mr. Lal Babu as he gets more margin compared to the company distributor. One might think it is only Rs.1, but when they buy a couple of cases, it translates into good savings for the retailer.

Is undercutting only relevant to wholesale?

The answer is No. The philosophy of under-cutting is the same, but it can be done by anybody in the supply chain. So, the salesman himself, in order to reach his target, can make this happen. He makes an invoice against one such large wholesaler Mr. Lal Babu and he passes the benefits to his retailer. But, this is going to be a problem in future for the salesman, as the retailer will get used to these benefits and he stops buying in normal situation. In a way, the brand or the particular product starts to become more driven by the wholesalers.

Various channel partners do under-cutting to boost volumes at his/her own level. Territory Sales Officers who will be in-charge of certain stockists too sometimes bill it against a certain stockist ABC, but he actually sells it to a big wholesaler. The distributor too can have his own share of price undercutting to attract the retailer.

Undercutting is a very common phenomena in the field. Though FMCG companies have various strict mechanisms to curb them, new loopholes are invented continuously to take advantage and undercut. After all, price matters to everybody.

Wholesale market in India

Wholesellers are none but middlemen who buy products from distributors (wholesale/retail) and sell them to retailers. In most cases, the retailers come to the wholesellers to buy products to replenish their stock. However, wholesellers may also sell to end consumers, but such sales are minimal.

In the Indian FMCG market, we have broadly two types of wholesellers:

1. Modern Wholesale stores such as Metro, Wal-Mart BestPrice, etc.

bestprice

2.  The neighbourhood wholesellers around the streets in India

wholesale

Wholesale distributors buy in bulk (high volumes) bargaining low prices from manufacturers. Wholesellers in turn buy products in demand (what retailers ask for?) at low prices from wholesale distributors. Because of this reason that wholesale distributors are bulk buyers, it is generally seen that wholesale is cheaper than retail. But, it also depends on how many middlemen it passes through, as each middleman adds his margin to the selling price.

What’s in it for the retailer?

Few reasons why retailers buy from the wholesellers:

  • No direct distribution of a brand to their stores
  • Low margins by distributors
  • Direct distributors dictating terms
  • Better deals at wholesale
  • To be aware of the high selling products and brands

Retailers also face some disadvantages in buying from wholesellers:

  • Buying goods on immediate cash
  • Transportation costs of the goods
  • Wholesellers may not take back the unsold inventory/stock

What’s in it for the manufacturer?

The wholesale channel helps the manufacturers achieve sales from markets where they are not directly able to handle retail sales and their shipments. In a country like India, where 95% of the retail environment is unorganized, and spanning across millions  of small stores, it is impossible to reach all the stores directly through your distributors.

Most companies will have strong direct distribution in cities like Mumbai, but as you go deep into India, the dependence on wholesale indirect channels increases. Most top selling brands and categories have a good amount of wholesale component. For example, a brand which is selling in Pan-India (across the regions in India) may have a wholesale component ranging from 20% to as high as 50-70% depending on the category/brand’s dependence on Rural India. It is obvious that most of the sales in Rural India happen through wholesellers. In Rural India, you will have strong wholesellers for every group of villages or in the nearby town, where retailers go and replenish their stocks.

Manufacturers would always like to have a higher contribution of retail sales to their overall shipments, as this helps them directly to control the nuts and bolts in the operations such as trade promotions and schemes, in-store visibility, relationship with retailers, pushing and increasing their assortment within the stores, maximising profitability, increased visibility of their sales, etc. The top FMCG companies are driving their direct distribution in Rural India as they mine the Gold at the Bottom of the Pyramid.

Impact of GST on Supply Chain

To understand how Goods and Services tax (GST) will help companies optimize their supply-chain, one needs to understand a little bit taxation and the existing warehouse strategy.

Let us take the example of a company whose manufacturing facility is present in Delhi, and it moves its goods down to South India. As the company sells in South India, it has to transfer its manufactured goods across the States. According to the current taxation, if you’re moving the goods from one State to another and selling it in the other State, then you’re liable to pay the Central Sales Tax (CST). The important point to note here is that you’re liable to pay the tax only if you’re transferring the goods for a sale. However, if you’re transferring not for a sale but for a stock transfer, you don’t need to pay the CST.

So, to avoid paying the CST, companies show the goods movement as a stock movement than a sale. But, to do this, they have to have a warehouse within the State where the goods are going to be transferred and stored. As a result, currently companies have warehouses within each State and show their goods movement as stock transfer than a sale. This essentially means that the current locations of warehouses are chosen to avoid the taxation, rather than to best service the customer.

For example, let us take the case of a city Hosur, which is a part of Tamil Nadu but it just 30km from Bangalore. So, geographically speaking, to service the customers in Hosur, the goods have to be shipped from the Bangalore warehouse. But unfortunately Hosur is a part of Tamil Nadu, which means the company has to pay the Central Sales tax (CST). So, instead of shipping  the goods from the Bangalore warehouse, they are forced to have a warehouse in Chennai and ship from Chennai, which is 250km from Hosur.

With GST coming in, companies will be freed from this problem and they can setup their warehouses to optimize their costs and best service the customers. This is going to save considerable costs for companies and improve the servicing levels.

Also refer to Tax_Structure_and_Supply_Chain_Network_Optimization_in_India.26491837  for an understanding of taxation from a supply chain perspective.

Cash & Carry retail in India

Cash and carry is a membership based retail store selling limited SKUs in bulk packs. Cash and carry has a membership requirement. Customers are usually members of the club and pay an annual fee in order to continue their membership. It is not like any other retail outlet where in one can go and buy items. It is limited to only certain members like wholesalers, semi-wholesalers and retailers. For example, METRO Cash and Carry India & Wal-Mart Cash & Carry, which are well-known to most people, are a good example of this format. Some of the recent entrants into this format are Carrefour and Reliance Retail.

Cash and carry models are able to sell at lower prices because of the basic, no frills format of the stores, volume of sales, low cost location and lower inventory carrying costs. Cash and Carry offers private labels as well as branded goods. The first Cash & Carry format store was opened in India by METRO in 2003. Most of the Indian companies want to tie-up with the International companies, and vice-versa, as 100% FDI is allowed in this format. This helps the Indian companies to learn the international best practices and technologies. The German company, Metro was the first one to enter the country. If you want to shop in Metro, you need to have a sales tax number with you and it is meant basically for retailers and distributors and not for consumers. And, you cannot shop for less than Rs 1,000 and, in product offerings, you cannot buy two to three, you have to buy six or more pieces of one particular product. Currently, Metro is present in six cities, present in all the Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) licensed states.

Indian retailers are interested in venturing with foreign retailers as we do not have capability to manage the operations for a cash and carry format. We do not have the expertise as developed countries do. Cash and carry format requires a strong backend support. Foreign players are looking for joint ventures with local retailers because they are interested in MBOs or retail outlet, apart from cash and carry format. Having an Indian partner gives them local support and they enjoy the chance to capitalize on a network, which is already established by the local player.

Most of the purchases for the hotels business happen through a network of purchase managers, who have long-term relationship with, let’s say, 200 suppliers. It is very unorganized. It is a challenge to convert that habit to a unified buying structure in large hotels. Now Metro supplies the Taj and Oberoi on a national basis. This means those guys had to change the entire system of purchasing and orient themselves to one particular supplier. It takes some time to get convinced of these changes. There are now dedicated supply-chains to these hotel chains from the Cash & Carry stores.

The Cash & Carry format in India is still in its infancy and will face a lot of changes. They need to develop new channels, and optimize their supply chains for more profits. Also, it is to be seen on how the Cash & Carry format business will be affected with the government keen to allow FDI so that the global giants can set their shops in the streets.

Thank you.