Aug 27, 2008

Business - JKS Agrimall,a mall with a difference

It’s a 3,000-sq ft space, and houses various brands neatly categorised with displays and price charts. It’s a mall — at least the name says so.

The ruse of passing off a supermarket space as ‘a mall’ is quite common in big cities, but JKS Agrimall is 70 kilometers away from Hyderabad , in a small town called Jangaon. But one can forgive the owners simply because of the genesis of JKS Agrimall. ‘JKS’ stands for ‘Jantha’ , ‘Kishore’ and ‘Santosh’ , three friends who have come together to start this supermarket retailing pesticides, fertilisers, seeds, sprayers and cement.

The three friends, who operated individual shops selling fertilisers, got together to start JKS Agrimall in May 2008. “Not that we were doing badly individually , but we wanted to compete with bigger organised players who are coming into the market,” explains Pajjuri Kishore, one of the owners. The preparations started by visiting modern formats and looking as to how they do business.

The lessons have been applied here, with computerised inventory management, display, competitive pricing and prompt service, says Kishore. Today, JKS Agrimall services a radius of 50 kilometers, and Kishore says that the aim is to acquire a huge volume business by pricing lesser than the market.

On expansion plans, Kishore says they have no plans to expand and instead, want to consolidate within the same market, so that when competition arrives they are ready. Kishore and his friends plan to touch a turnover of Rs 25 crore in the first year. Maybe some of the ‘mall owners’ in the big cities can pick up a trick or two on retailing from JKS.

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