Best Of Both Worlds
The city of Pune has emerged as a hot retail hub with a metropolitan outlook. The city is not only a centre for education but also hosts a gamut of multinational companies. The business growth of Pune brought about a certain demographic change which is writ large on the city’s retail landscape. So, while the traditional Peth area in the central part of Pune continues to be a highly popular place for wholesale and retail business, many other parts of the city, in particular the eastern and northern sides, are dotted with high-end retail outlets. The first mall showcasing international brands opened in the Koregaon Park in Pune in 2009. In the five intervening years, modern retail and showrooms have simply exploded on the scene.
Visits to the bazaar and street shopping are highly popular among the city dwellers. One may say the city pf Pune has developed and modernised in recent years, but that has not altered the unique character of the traditional retail formats there, especially in market areas like Laxmi Road and Tulsibagh. Many a times there is a noticeable similarity in these two areas, the only difference being that one is organised while the other is unorganised. These local markets have attuned themselves to the emerging customer preferences. As a case in point, the food outlets in these areas are cognizant of today’s customer’s demand for toppings on the food. They are equally aware of the need to tastefully display the products to attract shoppers. The local retailers are seen to be honing their skills at product display – on how to arrange the products in a presentable manner, how to go about with the promotions and offers on the windows or hand painted boards, how to create an aesthetic appeal, which is now termed as visual merchandising in retail. Puneites are generally fascinated by the fashion and preferences in Mumbai and Delhi, and they seem to imbibe them. So, what is on offer on the retail landscape pretty is in sync with these preferences. The window display concepts are also aligned accordingly. That is where the comparatively safe, smart and the costly location of Pune comes into consideration i.e. M.G. Road (Mahatma Gandhi Road, Pune). This is a place for all, where on the both sides of the street brands like UCB, Adidas, Puma, Raymond, The Bombay Store, Van Huesen and others have been retailing for very many years. On the same road there are the leading local retailers of Pune and the small stalls, shops for accessories, clothes, bags, footwear, etc. Considering that all types of retailers migrate to this part of the city, we can say that all types of consumers prefer shopping there. Some time back, the city body created a “Walking Plaza” on weekends on M.G. Road to encourage people to eat, shop and have fun all across the street.