Bharti to invest 2.5bln$ in deal with Wal-Mart

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NEW DELHI - Mobile phone firm Bharti Enterprises, which aims to start a chain of retail stores in India with US-based Wal-Mart, said it will invest up to 2.5 bln usd in the project by 2015.
'After revolutionizing the Indian telecom sector, retail will be the next big focus area for Bharti. The investment would be between 2 bln and 2.5 bln usd,' joint managing director Rajan Bharti Mittal told a news conference.
Bharti Enterprises, which owns the country's top private phone firm, said it will open stores in all Indian cities with a population of more than 1 mln.
India's fast growing affluent middle class, estimated as high as a third of its 1.1 bln population, spends about 300 bln usd annually on retail shopping, according to an estimate.
That figure is expected to double by 2015, according to consultants PriceWaterhouseCoopers.
Organized retailing, however, makes up only 3-5 pct of India's retail business, which is dominated by nearly 15 mln traditional mom-and-pop stores.
Bharti tied up with Wal-Mart (nyse: WMT - news - people ), the world's largest retailer, in November to open stores that would be owned by Bharti and run under a Wal-Mart franchise.
India does not allow foreign investment in retail except for single-brand stores such as Nokia or Nike.
Bharti said it would manage the front-end of the retail business, while Wal-Mart would be involved in the back-end, including logistics and supply and hire an estimated 60,000 new people.



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Trai earlier said that RS 70 per moblie per month is more than enough for every mobile company to keep going.


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it better be as good as the walmarts in USA. but i doubt they will find huge lands for single floor constructions...they will go grount+2 most probably...
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