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Auchan mulls multi-brand retail investment in India

France-based Auchan, one of the world's largest hypermarket chains, is mulling investment in India's multi-brand retail segment for opening 60 stores, a senior official has said. At present, Auchan has 13 hypermarkets in India operating under a franchise agreement with Max Hypermarket India.

'Auchan has shown interest in setting up its stores and I presume those stores will be under the multi-brand retail,' the official said. Auchan Global Chairman Vlanney Mulliez had called on Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on Tuesday and discussed various aspects of policy on foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail, including the product sourcing norms and investment in back-end infrastructure, the official said.

Sharma had told reporters that Auchan is very enthusiastic about India and has plans to open 60 stores.

After meeting Sharma, Mulliez had said 'the new regulations (on foreign direct investment) is a new issue for us. So, we are considering explaining our ambitions and seeking for some advice in order to address the best way this huge potential market'.

India allows up to 51 per cent foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail.

As per the regulations, foreign retailers planning to enter the multi-brand segment would have to invest a minimum of $100 million, with 50 per cent of it in the back-end infrastructure.
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