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From A Staid Consumer Co-operative To A Modern And Eco-Friendly Grocery Chain
Sahakari Bhandar is Mumbai’s most visited and preferred grocery store for more than 50 years. With 24 branches strategically located from Colaba to Virar, it offers convenience, good quality, safety and consistent availability of products to its customers. The legacy of trust continues since 1966, servicing more than millions of happy families. Sahakari Bhandar, although a co-operative, is an exciting blend of modern retailing with deep understanding of daily needs of its customers. Progressive Grocer spoke to Sanjay Shete, Chairman – Sahakari Bhandar, about the metamorphosis of a once sleepy stateowned cooperative retail chain into a bustling, bright and swanky neighborhood store chain today, which sells everything from groceries and frozen foods to household care and with a pleasant ambience and hygiene that have the stamp of professionalism everywhere.
Sanjay Kumar

What is the customer proposition and market positioning of Sahakari Bhandar store chain today?

Sahakari Bhandar is primarily a neighborhood grocery store fulfilling the monthly baskets of consumers in and around the store’s neighborhood. We sell all the day-to-day necessities – fruits and vegetables, frozen foods, bakery, food grains, FMCG products, household care, general-purpose items, among others. The product range also includes hand-made diya batti to an eco-friendly Ganesha idol, home-made (not branded) fresh dosa atta, chutneys, biscuits, etc. Basically, the stores have all the day-to-day necessities expected of an ideal convenience store.

With its positioning of ‘Sahi Quality, Sahi Price!, people from the middle-income group and local residents looking for a fair price deal form a major part of the target group of Sahakari Bhandar stores. Women initially formed the main target group; however, over the past decade or so, with all the infrastructural changes made at the stores, thanks to the JV with Reliance, consumers come to Sahakari Bhandar with their families and children to enjoy the overall shopping experience.

We have a loyal base of customers who have been shopping at our stores for over 10, 15, 20 years and more, thanks to the quality of the products and their very competitive price. Also, due to the cooperative legacy of 40 years, the strategic locations of the stores, and their fair price image, Sahakari Bhandar enjoys a strong customer connect, which we are determined to build on and improve further.

Besides our neighborhood convenience stores, we have four new Smart SB stores, which are positioned as destination stores.

Tell us about the location strategy of your stores.

Sahakari Bhandar outlets are located at 24 locations in Mumbai – Colaba to Virar and in primary trading areas having high density of customers to the population. These locations mainly have (unplanned) kirana stores selling maximum of two category products. This where Sahakari Bhandar comes into play with almost all everyday use items sold under one roof! All the locations of or branches as well as their phone numbers are listed at the back of the bags available at the store.

Which are your top-selling PLs in food and what are your plans to augment and expand your PLs?

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OCTOBER 2019

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