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SHOPERSTOP - Shopper's Stop News Story

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Sector
Consumer Cyclicals
Size
Small Cap
Market Cap £147.0m
Enterprise Value £353.8m
Revenue £354.0m
Position in Universe 566th / 3000

Coronavirus threatens retail jobs, Indian retailers see revenue hit

Mon 23rd March, 2020 5:55am
By Chandini Monnappa
    BENGALURU, March 23 (Reuters) - The coronavirus pandemic
amid an economic slowdown has hit revenue at Indian retailers
selling non essential items like clothes and jewelry by 75% so
far and is likely to cause widespread job losses, an industry
body said on Monday.
    About 40% of the six million employees working in India's
modern, rather than traditional, retail sector could likely lose
their jobs in the next four months if the government does not
intervene, Kumar Rajgopalan, chief executive, Retailers
Association of India (RAI), told Reuters.
    "Unless the government provides some relief, revenues will
slide by 90% in the next six months," Rajgopalan said,
suggesting moratoriums on the payment of loans, and on the
payments of the goods and services tax (GST) and other
government duties.
    The RAI represents 500,000 stores in India, including brands
like V-Mart  VMAR.NS , Shopper's Stop  SHOP.NS , Future Group
 FRTL.NS  and Avenue Supermarts  AVEU.NS , which operates the
grocery chain D-Mart.
    On Sunday, Future Retail, which owns hypermarket Big Bazaar,
said the pandemic, has resulted in a "degrowth of revenue".
    "The expected impact of COVID-19 as of now is hard to
ascertain," it said in a filing to the exchanges on Sunday. 
    India has registered 341 cases of coronavirus, with seven
deaths as of Sunday. Experts have warned the rate of increase in
cases in India mirrors those seen in the early stages of
outbreaks in other countries, which then went on to see rapid
growth.
    Gurgaon-based fashion retailer V-Mart Retailer  VMAR.NS  has
seen a 30% fall in revenue in the week of March 15-21 due to
store closures. The retailer has shut about 116 of its 265
stores as of Saturday.
    "Manpower costs are fixed, we are trying to support our
staff at least for the next 45 days," said Lalit Agarwal,
managing director,V-Mart Retail.
    Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail  ADIA.NS  said on Monday
that business had been significantly affected without specifying
 the impact of the pandemic.
    In India, the virus threatens an economy that was already
hit by a slowdown in consumption that has bruised demand for
everything from cars to clothes to chocolates.
    The virus, which originated in China, has infected nearly
200,000 people worldwide, forced countries into lockdown and
fear over its impact on global economy has sent world financial
markets crumbling.

 (Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon
Cameron-Moore)
 ((Nivedita.Bhattacharjee@thomsonreuters.com; Mobile: +91
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