Tablez, Lulu Group's retail arm, aims to make a mark in sports market

The retail stores will work as a franchise model in India for Go Sport

Adeeb-Ahamed Adeeb Ahamed, managing director, Tablez | via Twitter

Tablez, the organised retail arm of Lulu Group International, is all set to target the Indian sports retail market, which, it feels, has huge growth potential.

After having opened its first Go Sport store in Mumbai in May 2019, Tablez will launch its Bengaluru store on June 8, which will be inaugurated by former Indian badminton player Prakash Padukone. The firm claims that the recently launched Mumbai store is witnessing healthy traction.

The retail stores will work as a franchise model in India for Go Sport, a French sportswear, equipment and fitness firm.

“As per our initial research, we found that there is huge scope in the Indian sports retailing market and it is close to $ 3.3 billion worth. We expect this to grow at 9-10 per cent year-on-year to reach around $5 billion in the next few years. We plan to have around five such stores in India, including the Mumbai and Bengaluru stores, by May 2020 and aim to expand this to a total of 25 stores in the next five years, spread across cities in the country. Each of our stores will be set up with an investment of around Rs 10 crore, and altogether we are planning to invest close to Rs 250 crore for setting up all the stores.” Adeeb Ahamed, managing director, Tablez, told THE WEEK.

The initial focus of Tablez will be to target only the metro markets, and once the company gains traction in large metros, it will consider expanding to tier two and tier three cities. “We will tread a cautious approach in India and are not targeting to set up more than five stores a year in the country. The size of our stores will be large format multi-brand stores, minimum of around 10,000 square feet. Our Mumbai store is close to 14,000 square feet of space and our Bengaluru store will be spread across 12,000 square feet. Our stores will cater to all the different segments of buyers and will offer products starting from as low as Rs 79. We have also found that most of the time, Indian brands are not displayed properly and hence we will ensure that there is a mix of Indian and foreign brands on display at our stores,” said Ahamed.

The firm has exclusive tie-ups with many foreign brands such as North Face and Lowe Alpine, and will also be retailing many private labels of Go Sport at its stores in India. Go Sport will be a specialist curator for these stores and will closely work with sports personalities, experts and brands to create and showcase products. Besides, sports enthusiasts will be able to order various goods through these stores.