Thursday, July 20, 2006

Sahakari Bhandar

I was busy with the second part of the coming battle in retail when I chanced upon Reliance Industries tie up with Sahakari Bhandar. Sahakari Bhandar, was, in many ways the pioneer of self service stores in Bombay. Then, there were very few self service stores. Therefore a visit to the Sahakari Bhandar was some sort of an event. For my parents, Sahakari Bhandar was where they got a few rupees discount (they had a lower margin of profit). For me, as a child, it was immense fun walking through aisles of products that you could touch and feel. It usually involved me holding up a brightly coloured packet of something and my mom sternly scolding me "Leave it there" and buying all the uninteresting items - dal, kabuli chana and sugar. But it was still worth it, getting a little lost in the aisles and doing my own browsing thing.

There were a few me too stores like Sahakari Bhandar - Apna Bazaar, Apka Bhandaar and so on, but I digress. Some of these Bhandars had a self service section and a regular section where you could ask the attendant for items. If I recall correctly, this was more for high value items and items that could be pilfered easily. Those days there was no bar code nor electronic surveillance. They used a simple method. All exits had a sales counter and there was no exit without a sales counter.

I am not sure how they are doing these days, but Reliance Industries has sensed its potential and has soft launched their retail venture through these Sahakari Bhandars.


Anonymous said...

Shoppers Beware.
I speak from personal experience, The Sahakari Bhandaar at juhu is ripping off customers. Items not bought are charged for, advertised discounts are not billed. The unsuspecting customer who does not check his/her bills are cheated. The Billing section is unchecked . No action has been taken despite repeated complaints. So Beware.
This is posted in the interest of the unsuspecting public who still thinks that sahakari bhandar gives you value for money.

rahulsworld said...

Im not surprised.. Any thing even remotely connected to reliance would in some way skim money off you. Its their company policy "Crores are made from the one rupee which you cheat of your customers". Its really sad to see Sahakari Bhandar sell out like this. I always considered them to be the paradigm of the common man.

Suresh said...

I agree with Rahul. This is happening in a state which boasted of a vibrant co-operative movement. I am really sorry to see the Sahakari Bhandars succumb this way to extremely dubious private enterprise.