Shoppers Stop Management Discussions


THE COMPANY

Shoppers Stop, Indias leading fashion and beauty omni-channel destination, aims to inspire customers to look good and feel confident while fulfilling their lifestyle choices in a sustainable way. With an unparalleled selection of international and national brands across fashion, accessories, beauty, perfumes, footwear, and home furnishing, Shoppers Stop caters to the diverse fashion needs of men, women, and kids.

Since its establishment in 1991, Shoppers Stop has grown into one of the largest omni-channel networks in the country, while prioritising customer centricity and creating exceptional experiences. Covering a retail floor space of 3.9 million sq. ft. and serving customers across 17,000 pincodes through 270 retail stores, Shoppers Stop continues to redefine retail excellence, all while inspiring confidence and sustainable lifestyle choices.

ECONOMIC REVIEW

Global Review

The global economy in FY 2022-23 was impacted by inflation, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and COVID-19 resurgence in China. Global GDP grew by 3.4%, lower than the previous years growth of 5.9%. Advanced economies experienced their highest inflation rates since 1982, while emerging markets and developing economies saw the most significant inflation since 1999. Central banks globally raised policy interest rates to tackle inflation, leading to a contraction in GDP in Q2.

However, economic growth rebounded in the second half of the fiscal year, supported by lower commodity prices, strong labour markets, robust household consumption, and business investments. Additionally, Chinas reopening in November 2022 contributed to the rebound in global activity.

Outlook

Inflation trends, central bank actions, and Russias war in Ukraine are likely to shape FY24s economic growth. Global GDP is expected to grow by 2.8% in FY 2022-23 and 3.0% in FY 2023-24, led by developing economies. However, advanced economies like the US and Eurozone may experience a significant slowdown and brief recessions. Interest rates are likely to remain high due to continued inflationary pressures.

Source : https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WEO

Issues/2023/04/11/world-economic-outlook-april-2023

India

Indias economy is projected to grow by 7% in FY-23, despite inflation and supply shocks, due to the governments efforts to manage supply and demand. The government plans to invest in infrastructure and stimulate private investment to boost the economy through its various investor friendly measures (i.e. labour reforms, concessional tax rates for new domestic manufacturing units, Production Linked Incentive Schemes, etc.). The manufacturing and services sectors are expected to recover, with a revival in consumer and business confidence, as seen in the high PMI numbers.

In recent years, the private sector has made significant improvements to its balance sheet, indicating a potential increase in spending and a boost in capital expenditures when the investment cycle picks up. This, coupled with corporate deleveraging, has strengthened the banking systems balance sheets and allowed them to recover from the asset quality cycle. Additionally, the government has benefitted from high GST and direct tax collections, giving them the resources to spend and offset the impact of the anticipated global slowdown to keep the economy afloat. Despite the challenging economic climate, affluent consumers continue to drive demand, as seen by the robust growth in the retail industry and the strong profit performance of consumer staples and discretionary companies. Recent labour market data has also shown promising signs, with increased labour force participation and job creation in certain sectors. However, to achieve sustainable demand growth, job growth must continue to improve.

The Indian governments aim to make the country self-sufficient, or ‘Atmanirbhar, is being achieved through policies such as the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme, which has been extended till March 2023, and the Production Linked Incentive Scheme, which has a budget of I 8,083 crores. These measures aim to reduce Indias import dependence and support the manufacturing sector, which may benefit from multinational companies looking to reduce reliance on China.

Outlook

Despite facing global challenges, Indias economy has proven to be resilient and is positioned to surpass all major economies in growth rate, securing the top spot for the fastest-growing major economy worldwide. The economic survey forecasts a GDP growth rate of 6.5% in FY 2024-25, building on the countrys already impressive growth trajectory.

Source : Economic Survey of India, 2022-2023.

Global Retail Industry

The Retail Industry Market had a value of US$ 21,237.64 billion in 2022 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 7.69% from 2023 to 2030, reaching US$ 41,368.44 billion by 2030. The markets growth can be attributed to the increase in consumer spending in emerging economies, which is a major driving factor. The pandemic-induced rise in online shopping trends has also contributed to market growth. Furthermore, the increasing penetration of smartphones worldwide is generating more traffic on e-commerce websites, which is expected to drive market growth during the forecast period.

Source : https://www.verifiedmarketresearch.com/product/retail- industry-market/

INDIAN RETAIL MARKET OVERVIEW

Indian Retail Market

Indias retail sector is on a trajectory of growth and estimated to be US$ 1.1 trillion by 2027 and US$ 2 trillion by 2032. Currently, India is the worlds fourth-largest preferred retail destination and has the second-largest internet market, boasting a user base of 780 million. The retail market size is expected to range from US$ 740-760 billion in 2022, with a 2% increase in the share of e-commerce channels witnessed in the past three years. Offline retail channels have also shown a 15% increment in CAGR for top channels in 9M FY23 vs 9M FY20. India ranks among the best countries to invest in the retail space, primarily due to its vast population, a rising middle-income class of around 158 million households, increasing urbanisation, connected rural consumers, and increased discretionary spending. The retail sector currently accounts for over 10% of Indias GDP and around 8% of the workforce, with projections estimating that it will create 25 million new jobs by 2030. The demand for organised retail space has helped create a capacity of approximately 120 million sq. ft. in retail space across major Indian cities such as Delhi and Mumbai.

Source: Retail Association of India, Invest India, Business Standard

Emergence of the E-commerce Market in India

The e-commerce market in India has experienced significant growth and diversification over the past two decades. The market is expected to reach US$ 350 billion in GMV and have around 500 million online shoppers by 2030, reflecting the increasing penetration of internet and smartphones in the country. Furthermore, the Indian e-commerce market is unique in that it is heavily driven by the sale of fashion and lifestyle products, unlike other markets in the region where electronic products are the primary driver. One of the key factors driving the growth of the Indian e-commerce market is the convenience and ease of online shopping, which has made it a popular choice among consumers, particularly in the metros and Tier I cities. Additionally, the growth of Indias digital economy is expected to touch US$ 800 billion by 2030, reflecting the countrys transformation from a bottom-of-the-pyramid economy to a truly middle-class-led economy, with consumer spending estimated to reach nearly US$ 6 trillion by the same year. The emergence of UPI as a significant player in all digital payments, accounting for around 62 billion transactions in 2022, is also a significant driver of growth in the Indian e-commerce market.

Sources :

https://www.investindia.gov.in/sector/retail-e-commerce https://www.indianretailer.com/article/technology-e-commerce/digital- trends/emergence-indian-e-commerce-market-and-retail-trends

KEY TRENDS IN INDIAN CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR

Going Vocal for Local: The Growing Fondness for Indian Brands

• Indian consumers exhibit a clear inclination towards homegrown brands over foreign ones, with 50% choosing an Indian brand over an international one in at least one category. This preference is particularly strong in the apparel sector, where Indian brands are perceived to cater better to the specific needs of Indian consumers, resulting in superior products. Furthermore, this inclination is more pronounced among older consumers aged 45 to 59, with 58% of them preferring to buy Indian brands in at least one category.

Shattering Gender Stereotypes: The Ascent of Female Decision Makers

• As gender gaps in secondary education in India have disappeared, women have become the primary decision-makers in household purchases 54% of the time. This trend extends beyond traditionally targeted womens categories, with 51% of women making final decisions about family leisure travel and 44% about bikes and scooters. Additionally, womens shopping habits differ from mens, with women visiting multiple stores and seeking advice from store associates when shopping for gadgets, compared to men who prioritise popular brands and online research.

Information-Centred Shopping

• In Indian cities, shopping has become an information-focused experience. 85% of shoppers check at least two extra pieces of information apart from prices and discounts. Around 50% of them conduct online research, seeking product reviews, manufacturing and expiry dates, and feature comparisons with alternatives.

Staying Ahead of the Curve: The Trendy Shoppers Mindset

• The urge to stay up-to-date with the latest trends is becoming a significant driver of consumer purchases in India. According to a recent survey, over 60% of respondents reported buying a product in the past year, in at least one category, solely because it was trendy and they wished to upgrade, regardless of whether or not they required a replacement.

Health and Wellness: The New Normal for Indian Consumers

• More than half (57%) of Indian consumers are investing in health and wellness, with 46% spending on services like health check-ups, gym memberships, and diet consultations, while 40% are spending on healthier food options.

The Customisation Craze Sweeping India

• Although mass-produced products have traditionally dominated the Indian market, there is a growing desire for customised offerings in some categories. Our survey found that 56% of respondents paid extra for customisation in at least one category in the past year. The womens apparel category had the highest percentage (27%) of consumers paying for customisations such as fabric, designs, or colors beyond basic alterations, followed closely by mens apparel at 24%. An IT professional shared that he was inspired to purchase a custom-made shirt after noticing his bosss similar attire.

The Allure of Exclusivity: Adding Value to Products

• In some categories, exclusivity is now seen as a value-add by Indian consumers. For instance, 37% of urban Indians consider exclusivity to be a valuable feature when it comes to eyewear, select electronic items, and apparel. Among them, 14% of female consumers believe that exclusive brands of apparel improve their social status, while others take pride in owning limited-edition products like the Titan Raga watch. While the traditional notions of best price and good quality still hold, exclusivity is becoming increasingly important for some consumers.

The Rental Revolution: Choosing Access over Ownership

• Renting is gaining popularity among Indian consumers, with 17% of survey respondents having rented instead of purchased traditional items in the past year, and 25% considering renting in the future. The trend is driven by the increasing availability of rentals through startups in big cities and the affordability factor for lower-income respondents. Higher-income consumers rent for reasons such as flexibility and variety, as demonstrated by tech-savvy youth who rents a new smartphone every few months. Even consumers in smaller cities like Jamnagar are eager for apparel rentals to become widely available, driven by social occasions and the desire to avoid repeating outfits.

Efficiency Reigns: The Growing Demand for Time-Saving Solutions

• 57% of urban Indians have adopted time-saving products and services, even if they are more expensive or underutilise existing resources. For instance, a young Delhi couple bought their furniture online to avoid shopping in the heat, while a Bhubaneshwar family hired an end-to-end service provider to refurbish their house. A businessman with a car opts to commute in a taxi to catch up on phone calls instead of fighting traffic and searching for a parking spot.

Fashion

The Indian Fashion industry is poised for significant growth in the coming years, with revenue projected to reach US$ 19.86 billion by 2023. This growth is expected to continue at a CAGR of 13.35% from 2023-2027, resulting in a projected market volume of US$ 32.79 billion by 2027. China is the biggest contributor to this market, with a projected market volume of US$ 336.80 billion by 2023. The number of users in the Fashion segment is expected to reach 528.70 million by 2027, with user penetration projected to increase from 25.5% in 2023 to 35.7% in 2027. The Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) is expected to be US$ 54.61, indicating a significant potential for revenue growth in the industry. With the rise of digitalisation and the increasing preference for online shopping, the fashion industry is poised for further growth in the coming years. However, companies will need to adapt to changing consumer preferences and find ways to stand out in a crowded market to capitalise on this growth opportunity.

Source: Statista (https://www.statista.com/outlook/dmo/ecommerce/ fashion/india )

The Indian premium beauty market is expected to grow in high double-digits in the coming years. This is expected despite the fact that the growth in FY 2021-22, with the post-COVID impact was an estimated 9% over FY 2019-20, according to Euromonitor International. We believe per capita spend on beauty and personal care is going to increase. Increased affordability and shift in demographics would benefit Beauty and Personal Care.

Individuals growing beauty awareness, the influence of social media, and rising income levels are driving the preference for customised, organic, and premium product variants, which provides attractive growth prospects to leading market players. Additionally, physical store retailers are adopting innovative strategies, such as having beauty studios with personalised beauty advisors, to increase customer engagement and enhance their shopping experience.

Source: IMARC

Beauty and Personal Care Market

The India beauty and personal care market has grown to US$ 26.3 billion in 2022, and it is expected to reach US$ 38.0 billion by 2028, exhibiting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.45% during 2023-2028. The increasing emphasis on personal health and hygiene is one of the primary factors driving the demand for beauty and personal care products in India. The beauty market in India has evolved considerably in the last few years with loyal consumers who are actively adding global brands to their collection of beauty products.

STRENGTHS

First Citizens Loyalty Programme

With over 9 million loyal members, contributing 75% of sales, the First Citizens Loyalty Programme is the most longstanding of its kind. Our loyalty programme, with investments in Jarvis (our data-analytical tool), helps us to gain a comprehensive understanding of our customers behaviour with data-driven insights. This enables us to make informed analytical decisions, in turn helps our customers in their shopping needs. It also allows us to customise our communication based on their interest level.

Omni-Channel Presence

Our robust omni-channel strategy provides customers with enhanced value, personalised communication, and round-the-clock access to customer service. As a result, we are able to effectively manage customer experiences, optimise brand performance, promote customer retention, and foster long-lasting brand loyalty.

During the year FY 2022-23, shoppersstop.com recorded 104 million visits, while our mobile application was downloaded 3.1 million times (with a cumulative total of 17.1 million downloads).

Personal Shopper Service

In the FY 2023, from our team of 220 skilled personal shoppers, 120 received training in customer service, fashion and styling. They provided personalised assistance to 100K+ customers. They have contributed 3 times higher ATV.

Brand Marketing

We invest in our Digital Marketing Strategy. Our marketing efforts focused on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, actively promote our products and collaborate with influential social media personalities. Throughout the year, we launched thought-provoking campaigns targeted at various consumer sub-segments and regional segments, leading to successful outcomes. In addition, we have identified new marketing opportunities and created innovative properties to further advance our brand.

Strong Brands

By offering a wide range of products in apparel, beauty, accessories, and home decor, tailored to meet consumer preferences, the Shoppers Stop brand has been able to attract and retain a large customer base. This has bolstered our market position and solidified our status as the preferred choice for mall developers, brands, and suppliers, thus enhancing customer mindshare.

This enabled growth sales of various product categories, such as activewear, womens wear, mens casual wear, kids wear, fragrances, makeup, and more. To capitalise on the ongoing wardrobe reboot trend, we have optimised our product portfolio and are well-positioned to meet the changing needs of our customers.

Robust Supply Chain

At Shoppers Stop, we have established a robust supply chain structure that plays a vital role in enhancing our operational efficiency. By closely tracking, managing, and controlling inventory levels at various nodes, we can effectively monitor the flow of goods and ensure optimal inventory management. Regular analysis of sales patterns allows us to make informed decisions and optimise inventory levels accordingly.

To support our operations, we have set up four distribution centres across India that serve our department retailers. These centres are strategically located and equipped with advanced technology and processes to ensure seamless and efficient distribution of products.

Strong Systems, Processes, and Teams

At Shoppers Stop, we believe that investing in people, process, and technology is crucial for achieving sustainability and profitability. Therefore, we constantly strive to enhance our capabilities in these areas.

Over the past year, we have launched several technology transformation initiatives, and we are continuously strengthening our information technology capabilities and processes. Our loyalty engine and digitisation efforts have integrated our physical stores with our online portal as well as Amazon, resulting in significant improvements in inventory management and turnaround time. We remain committed to investing in technological innovations that will help us meet the evolving needs of our customers and improve our bottom line.

Corporate Governance

We maintain high standards of Corporate Governance, which are fundamental to the business of our Company since its inception. We have attached a separate report on Corporate Governance with a Certificate from the Statutory Auditors of the Company regarding compliance of conditions of Corporate Governance as stipulated under Securities and Exchange Board of India (Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements) Regulations, 2015 ("Listing Regulations"). A Certificate of the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of the Company in terms of Listing Regulations is also annexed to this Annual Report.

Customer Footfall

At Shoppers Stop we have experienced a good revival of footfalls after COVID-19. Our newly launched stores in Tier 2/3 have received good response by way of high footfalls.

Experienced and Seasoned Leadership/Managerial Workforce

At the leadership front, we have an experienced team with a shared vision and clear goal. This helps us to provide great value to our stakeholders.

Data Analytics, Customised Campaigns and Personalisation

As a leader in the industry, we leverage consumer data to improve our sales and marketing strategies, resulting in more precise consumer targeting and personalised services. By providing real-time updates on stock and inventory, we can effectively grow our online sales through inventory ads on digital media. Our data analytics capabilities are instrumental in aggregating customer interactions, both in-store and online. Our primary objective is to offer personalised consumer experiences, using data collected from loyalty programmes and customer data models. These critical factors have enabled us to achieve a high contribution of repeat sales of over 60% both offline and online.

CHALLENGES

Accelerated Technology Adoption

The transition from conventional business methods to online modes has facilitated customers in accessing global designs conveniently. Consequently, new platforms are emerging rapidly, and the industry is gradually embracing them.

Inadequate Availability of Skilled Workforce

The retail industry faces a shortage of proficient workforce,leadingtoahighturnoverrate.However,wehave managed to maintain lower attrition rates than the industry standard through our talent management programme. This programme has enabled us to develop a pool of managers and leaders who will steer our future growth. Additionally, we have strengthened our management team by hiring experts in crucial domains such as e-commerce, marketing, and supply chain.

OPPORTUNITIES Fluid Fashion

The rise in popularity of gender-fluid fashion indicates a growing trend among consumers to challenge conventional gender stereotypes. In response, brands and retailers need to re-evaluate their approach to product design, marketing, and shopping experiences to accommodate the evolving attitudes towards gender identity and expression.

Online Expansion

Post the pandemic, there has been a remarkable shift in shopping behaviours with respect to the types of products being bought and the purchase journey followed by customers. To cater to these evolving lifestyles, brands are modifying their strategies. Online shopping has emerged as a convenient option to explore diverse product categories and provides a hassle-free experience. Hence, online shopping avenues are poised to have a substantial impact in the times ahead.

Premiumisation and Access to Global Brands

In India, there is a growing trend among consumers to opt for global brands and trade up due to rising incomes, increased internet penetration, and attractive online price promotions. As a result, the Indian consumer is willing to spend more on premium products, and high-street retail is gaining popularity. However, the COVID-19 crisis has restricted the mobility of even the wealthiest consumers, resulting in limited access to premium brands available at duty-free stores and foreign locations. Consequently, luxury and premium brands have shifted their focus to e-commerce, as consumers are staying at home during the pandemic.

Beauty & Personal Care Categories

Indias beauty and personal care retail market is one of the rapidly expanding sectors worldwide, with constantly changing consumer preferences and trends, coupled with fierce competition and innovation within the industry. Increased discretionary spending and growing awareness of personal hygiene and grooming have resulted in a surge in demand. As a prominent beauty physical retailer with a strong online presence, we are well-positioned to capitalise on this opportunity and expand our footprint in this segment.

Digital Innovation

The retail industry has undergone a significant transformation through digitisation, revolutionising the customer experience and leading to a shift in purchase patterns. With the help of technology, customers can now discover products in innovative ways, resulting in a non-linear path to purchase. To guide customers through this process, retailers are leveraging digital innovations, which have become increasingly prevalent in the industry. Our app has enabled customers to enjoy a seamless shopping experience, allowing them to discover merchandise both in-store and online, thus making it an omni-channel experience.

Aggressive expansion, Gain Market Share

Shoppers Stop has aggressive expansion plans. In terms of the same, the Company opened 11 new departmental stores and 12 Beauty stores during the year under review. The Company plans to continue with the same in FY 24.

THREATS Competition

The post-pandemic era has witnessed a surge in the Indian retail market, with several new players entering the sector. However, our strong market edge is sustained by our extensive presence, seamless service offerings, diverse formats, and highly skilled management team.

Inflation

As inflation rates continue to rise globally, consumers are likely to experience a reduction in disposable incomes. This decrease in purchasing power is expected to have a significant impact on consumer sentiments, resulting in a decline in discretionary spending. Discretionary spending refers to non-essential purchases, such as luxury goods or entertainment, that consumers may opt to forgo during times of economic uncertainty. The decrease in consumer spending can, in turn, affect businesses and industries that rely on consumer demand for their products or services. Therefore, it is crucial for businesses to monitor and adapt to changing economic conditions to mitigate the impact on their operations.

FINANCIAL REVIEW *

Revenue

The Company reported a revenue of K 3,998 crores during FY 2022-23, recording a growth of 60% Y-o-Y over K 2,494 crores in FY 2021-22.

EBITDA

The reported EBITDA of the Company is K 755 crores in FY 2022-23 compared to an EBITDA of K 434 crores in FY 2021-22, recording a growth of 74%

Finance Cost

The finance cost for FY 2022-23 stood at K 209 crores , a marginal increase from K 205 crores in FY 2021-22, due to increased lease cost.

Depreciation

Depreciation for the year under review stood at K 382 crores as compared to K 352 crores in FY 2021-22, an increase by 9 %.

Dividend

No dividend is recommended for the year under review.

Inventory

The inventory at the end of FY 2022-23 was K 1,486 crores as against K 1,008 crores in FY 2021-22. The inventory is valued at a lower cost and net realisable value.

KEY FINANCIAL RATIOS *

The following table shows a summary of specific key financial ratios:

Particulars Units FY23 FY22 Y-o-Y change
Return on Equity % 73.43 (51.21) 243.40%
Return on Capital Employed % 14.44 3.72 287.84%
Debt equity ratio Times 10.14 21.30 (52.38)%
EBITDA Margin % 18.88 17.39 150 bps
Net Profit Ratio % 3.27 (3.06) 206.95%
Current Ratio Times 0.80 0.78 02.43%
Debt Service Coverage Ratio Times 1.28 0.90 42.07%
Inventory Turnover Ratio Times 1.87 1.62 15.22%
Trade Receivable Turnover Ratio Times 108.09 64.19 68.38%

Return on Equity

Return on Equity is calculated by dividing the net profit after tax of the Company by the average shareholders equity. ROE increased to 73.43% in FY 2022-23 from (51.21%) in FY 2021-22 due to an increase in equity and improved operational performance.

Return on Capital Employed

Return on Capital Employed (ROCE) is a financial ratio that can be used to assess a Companys profitability and capital efficiency. It is calculated by dividing earnings before interest and tax by capital employed. Capital employed

= Net worth + Total debt (including lease liability as per Ind-AS 116). The ROCE has grown from 3.72% to 14.44%, recording 287. 84% growth Y-o-Y.

Debt equity ratio

The debt-to-equity (D/E) ratio is commonly used to evaluate a Companys financial leverage. It is calculated by dividing a Companys total debt (including lease liability as per Ind-AS 116) by its shareholder equity. The debt-to-equity ratio has improved from 21.30 in FY 2021-22 to 10.14 in FY 2022-23 on account of repayment of loans.

EBITDA Margin

EBITDA margin measures earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) as a percentage of its revenue. It has increased by 150 bps from 17.39% in FY 2021-22 to 18.88% in FY 2022-23 on account of improvement in sales and profit as compared to the previous year.

Net Profit Ratio

The net profit ratio measures a Companys profitability by calculating its net profit after tax as a percentage of its revenue. It stood at -3.06% in FY 2021-22 and improved to 3.27% in FY 2022-23 due to an increase in profitability.

Debt Service Coverage Ratio

The debt service coverage ratio measures a Companys ability to pay interest and term loan instalments. It is calculated by dividing a Companys earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) by debt service (interest plus principal repayments). The ratio in the current year has been improved from 0.90 in FY 2021-22 to 1.28 in FY 2022-23 on account of improved EBITDA in the current year.

Inventory Turnover Ratio

The inventory turnover ratio is a financial metric that measures how efficiently a Company manages its inventory. It is calculated by dividing the cost of goods sold by the average inventory for a given period. It improved from 1.62 in FY 2021-22 to 1.87 in FY 2022-23 on account of an increase in sales.

Trade Receivable Turnover Ratio

The trade receivables turnover ratio is a financial metric that measures a Companys effectiveness in collecting its trade receivables. It is calculated by dividing the total sales for a given period by the average trade receivables outstanding during that period. From 64.19 in FY 2021-22 to 108.08 in FY 2022-23, it grew 68.39% Y-o-Y on account of an increase in sales.

HUMAN CAPITAL

At Shoppers Stop, our Human Capital is a critical component of its business strategy. The Company employs a large and diverse workforce that includes full-time and part-time employees. The Companys Human Capital strategy is focused on attracting and retaining top talent, developing employee skills and capabilities, and fostering a positive and inclusive workplace culture.

6,319

TOTAL EMPLOYEES

At Shoppers Stop, our Human Capital programme is designed to promote employee engagement and satisfaction. The Company invests in training and development programmes, leadership development initiatives, and skills development opportunities to help employees grow and advance in their careers. The Company also places a high emphasis on diversity and inclusion, with employee resource groups and initiatives to create an inclusive culture.

1,894

TOTAL FEMALE EMPLOYEES

4,425

TOTAL MALE EMPLOYEES

Shoppers Stops WE CARE Initiative: A Holistic Approach to Employee Wellness

Employee wellness has always been a priority at Shoppers Stop, but the COVID-19 pandemic prompted the Company to take a deeper and more meaningful look at the issue. In response, Shoppers Stop launched the WE CARE initiative, which focuses on promoting health and well-being among its employees. The initiative is driven by six dimensions that the Company has identified as key to leading a happier and fuller life.

The Six Dimensions of Wellness:

• Physical: Recognising the need for physical activity for your body and mind.

• Social: Developing a sense of connection, belonging and a well-developed support system.

• Financial: Satisfaction with their current and future financial situations.

• Environmental: Occupying a pleasant and stimulating environment that supports well-being.

• Emotional: Coping effectively with life and creating satisfying relationships.

• Intellectual: Recognising creative abilities and finding ways to expand knowledge and skills.

By implementing these initiatives, the Company has aimed to create a more positive and healthy work environment. The wellness initiatives have helped in reducing workplace stress and promoting a positive mindset among employees. This has resulted in employees being more productive and happier in their work environment.

To bring the six dimensions of wellness to life, Shoppers Stop has implemented various initiatives across four areas - awareness, communication, access, and assistance. The Company has raised awareness of wellness issues in the workplace through surveys, webinars, and leadership talks. Internal communication platforms have been used to promote wellness initiatives through fun quizzes, mailers, and SMS blasts. The Company has made wellness programmes accessible to its employees by providing a fully functioning fitness room, employee assistance programmes, a menstrual leave policy, and planned sabbaticals. Wellness Champs from different business units and zones have been created to lead programmes such as meditation workshops and Zumba workshops and to provide peer-to-peer support.

VOLUNTEERING INITIATIVES FOR EMPLOYEES HOLISTIC WELL_BEING

Shoppers Stop, a retail chain in India, believes in the importance of engaging its employees in various volunteering activities. These initiatives promote the mental AND emotional well-being of the employees. Shoppers Stop has partnered for various initiatives with NGOs, including Isha Foundation, Aniruddhas Academy of Disaster Management, Robin Hood Army, and TRRAIN to provide exposure and experience to Employees to impact their emotional and mental well-being.

To help our employees understand and prioritise their physical well-being in a manner that was doable and sustainable, we implemented certain fundamental practices and augmented these with more unique well-being offerings. The first one was free health check-ups for all. Under this initiative, we helped them understand why it was important to stay on top of their health issues. We held a free, basic health screening with an ECG setup at 23 locations. The response was encouraging, with 2,205 employees undergoing an assessment followed by a medical consultation for the same with the doctors.

We had specific health check-ups that took place during these camps where 852 associates from across all stores and services office had their various check-ups done.

Workshops conducted comprising of Zumba (fitness) sessions, Ergonomics awareness, Meditation and Yoga Sessions on International Yoga Day to provide a more balanced and holistic outlook to ones well-being. More than 500 associates across the Services Office and stores participated.

We brought onboard laughter therapy sessions to rejuvenate the body, mind and soul of our employees. A fun-filled activity that touched on the importance of sharing a laugh with peers and winding down during a busy day. The session aimed to help associates reboot their minds through the laughter therapy sessions. Over 250 participants understood the dynamics and benefits of laughing freely.

We also partnered with Robin Hood Army to donate a bag of hope as a part of their mission to serve 75 lakh meals across India. The Bag of Hope contained Rice, Wheat Flour, Tur Dal, Maggi and biscuit packets. Employees across 90+ stores and our services office pan-India, contributed towards this Bag of Hope to provide relief and assistance to underprivileged families.

We collaborated with the Isha Foundation for their Save Soil Movement. Save Soil aims to avert the crisis facing soil health. It took us to Mokhada Village with the Seed Ball initiative to sow seeds in the barren lands of the village. We also conducted engaging and interactive sessions on the ‘Save Soil Movement at our Shoppers Stop stores and services office to educate our associates on the importance of soil health. This was our small step towards making this world a better place for us and our future generations.

Shoppers Stop places the customer at the centre of all its business operations, and the Supply Chain function is no exception. With a strong focus on driving operational efficiencies and cost optimisation, we have made significant strides in improving our supply chain processes, delivering high-quality products, and meeting the ever-evolving needs of our customers.

During the year under review, we achieved several key milestones, including reducing the turnaround time for our high-velocity stores from 1.8 days to 1 day in cities where our DCs are located. We achieved a B2B store order fulfilment rate of above 99.5% against allocated orders, filling stock gaps on time, and lowering opportunity costs. Our focus on tracking vehicle utilisation for DC to store deliveries and route planning has helped us optimise vehicle sizes and frequencies, leading to better operational efficiency.

Our Supply Chain is an integral part of our omnichannel strategy, responsible for the last-mile deliveries to customers for online orders received on all platforms. We have made significant improvements in the Order to Delivery turnaround time, reducing it from 3.8 days to 3 days, and the overall Order-to-Deliver TAT for all channels, from 4.6 days to 3.9 days. Our implementation of the allocation logic has improved the overall Intra zone movement from 25% to 54%, resulting in a significant improvement in the Order-to-Delivery TAT. SCM is also responsible for ensuring timely deliveries of packaging material for e-commerce order processing across all channels.

We are a 100% GS1-compliant Company with a cost-effective warehouse management system that allows us to manage our omnichannel supply chain transparently. Our distribution centres have automated processes and are centrally monitored, ensuring timely deliveries before the store opens. The inventory for our digital channels is integrated with our distribution centres, enabling us to service online orders with ease and support our Ship From Store facility. We are committed to reducing delivery time from days to hours, investing in our supply chain capabilities to ensure consistency across channels, and emphasising material quality and recycling of packaging cartons in our warehouses. With a network of a large number of vendors across the country, we are actively working to create business relationships built on trust and respect, ensuring a sustained and efficient supply of high-quality products to our consumers.

Customer Service Effectiveness

We continue to receive positive feedback from our customers regarding our customer-centric initiatives, which aim to enhance their satisfaction by providing delightful experiences.

RISK GOVERNANCE & INTERNAL CONTROLS

Risk

Description

Mitigation
Customer Acquisition, Retention &

The dynamic nature of customer

We strive to broaden our lifestyle
Changing Consumer Preferences

preferences, purchasing behaviour and

portfolio by venturing into new

customer sentiment changes

due to

categories and expanding our brand

inflationary pressures in the economy

and product offerings. This approach

is rapidly evolving, surpassing

previous

mitigates the risk of over-reliance on

rates. Customers may alter

their

any particular product type, category, or

preferences, purchasing behaviour, and

brand, thereby reducing our vulnerability

favoured mediums of purchase,

both

to changes in customer preferences.

physical and digital, regarding

product

Additionally, we have a comprehensive

types, brands, and categories.

digital presence, encompassing various
mobile applications, and web formats,
and we continuously assess and adopt
new selling formats to expand our reach.
We have curated our First Citizens
Loyalty programmes to bring in
fresh/new experiences beyond the
normal boundaries of shopping
in our stores or the online space.
We provide exclusive Personal Shoppers
services to our esteemed and Loyal First
Citizen Customers to give enhanced
service and support to them at the stores.
Competitive Landscape

The retail industry with e-commerce

We have allocated substantial resources

channels is highly competitive.

The

to developing a diverse range of selling

current and potential customers

have

models, encompassing digital channels

access to various options, such as online

and an extensive nationwide store

and brick-and-mortar retailers, as well as

network. Additionally, we offer distinctive

direct-to-consumer distribution channels.

beauty and fashion products, and we stock

There is a possibility of new retail players

a varied selection of brands, including

venturing into the lifestyle categories that

those that we import and distribute

we operate in.

directly. To establish enduring customer
value, we focus on implementing
responsible and customer-centric
marketingandeducationstrategies,aimed
at promoting brand loyalty in the long run.
Talent Retention

Our capacity to lure and retain

talented

We benchmark our compensation and

employees is a vital aspect

of

our

align with the market to ensure that we

operations. In a constantly

evolving

are competitive. We prioritise forward-

industry, employees lacking

the

thinking investments in our workforce,

necessary skills could impede our ability

actively seeking out top talent from

to innovate. Additionally, the highly

various backgrounds and identities. As

competitive labour market for specialised

our business and functional requirements

skill sets and the possible departure of

continue to expand, we have successfully

key personnel may hinder our

growth.

scaled up our employee base without

The proficiency enhancement

of

our

compromising our agile work approach.

workforce is crucial for driving innovation

Our dedication to diversity and inclusivity

and achieving excellence in our business.

is unwavering, and we foster a high-
performance culture that emphasises the
importance of upskilling and reskilling our
employees with the appropriate tools.
Risk

Description

Mitigation

Compliance and Regulatory Risk

The retail, digital, and e-commerce

Shoppers Stop prioritises compliance

industries, along with consumer goods,

with statutory regulations and adheres

are subject to evolving regulations in India

to the laws of the country. We invest in

and globally, which may pose risks to their

IT-enabled systems and processes to

operating structures. These

industries

ensure compliance and provide ongoing

are constantly adapting to

changing

education to our internal stakeholders

regulatory environments.

on regulatory matters. To stay informed

about regulatory developments, we

have adequate mechanisms and tools

that provide all the applicable regulatory

updates, ensuring compliance.

Cybersecurity and Data Breaches

The security of our technology and data

Shoppers Stop allocates significant

infrastructures is vulnerable to potential

resources to enhance cybersecurity

cyberattacksandsecuritybreaches,which

and safeguard our data. We conduct

can result in reputational and operational

independent third-party evaluations of

risks. Our business heavily

relies

on

critical IT systems that handle sensitive

digital infrastructures for communication

data and consistently improve the

with suppliers and customers

and

on

technological infrastructures responsible

third-party integrations.

for securing this information. We

implement advanced cybersecurity

technologies to control and monitor

access to our IT systems, with our

information technology teams constantly

improving server security, firewall

implementation, and web security. To

ensure the adoption of best practices, we

conduct Company-wide training sessions

for our employees on an ongoing basis.

Threats of Deep Discounts

The aggressive use of deep

discounts

Our mitigation plan centres around

on e-commerce platforms, primarily

to

enhancing the price-value proposition

increase market share, could

potentially

of our products to cultivate stronger

harm Indias apparel retail industry

as

and more desirable brands and

a whole. As more individuals

turn

to

improving the Customer Experience

e-commerce for affordable

fashion

and services through our Personal

options, there is a growing demand

for

Shoppers Programme to build long-term

low-priced products, creating

a

market

relationships with our esteemed loyal

for low-quality clothing that detracts from

First Citizen customers. To fulfil our brand

the high-end fashion market.

promise, we will focus on refining our

sourcing management and implementing

a more streamlined approach to order

fulfilment.

Technology Risks

Technology is a critical component

for

We actively pursue a digital mindset to

driving process efficiency, and controls as

evaluate and benchmark our Technology

well as for providing enhanced customer

stack with the latest that is available in the

experience with both offline and online

retail space. Basis the evaluation we invest

shopping; Lack of agility and

innovation

in technologies which we believe would

in driving investments into technology

result in enhancing our capacity and help

upgradation would result in an impact on

in the scalability of the business, apart

customer experience as well as on internal

from improving customer experience.

process effectiveness and controls.

Retail Space Availability Risk

Availability of quality space

and

in

We believe that the Organised Retail

requisite quantum due to

increased

Space in India is growing at a decent

competition combined with high rentals

pace with a positive impact on Indias

and delays in committed deliverables

by

economic growth; This has resulted in a

developers pose significant risks to

the

shift in consumer base to other Tier-II and

expansion plans of the Company.

III cities which provides opportunities for

our Store expansion plans. Management

maintains a rigorous process of evaluation

of available marquee properties apart

from building sustainable relationships

with developers to ensure that the

Companys plans of expansion can be

executed to drive scalability and reach

across all major cities.

INTERNAL CONTROLS

The Company has robust Internal Controls embedded across all the business processes, through a combination of Entity level Controls, Process level controls and IT General Controls driven via systems, policies, delegation of authority and vigilant Management oversight and review at regular intervals. The Company has appointed KPMG as its Internal Auditors. The Internal Audit plan is approved by the Audit Committee at the beginning of every year. The conduct of Internal Audit is oriented towards the review of internal controls and risks in the Companys operations and business process. Every quarter, the Audit Committee is presented with a summary of significant audit observations and follow-up actions thereon.

The Board recognises the work of the auditors as an independent verification of the information received from the management on our operations and performance.

Our Internal Financial Control Framework established is commensurate with the size of the operations of the Company and the same is evaluated regularly by the Internal Auditors and reported to the Audit Committee at timely intervals.

We have a well-defined system of Management Reporting, with periodic reviews internally with the Leadership Team and to the Board once a quarter.

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE

Our enterprise is governed by the highest principles of integrity, transparency and accountability for all processes and policies embedded for driving corporate governance philosophy and for compliance with all laws applicable to the business

All actions/decisions are taken basis of the aforesaid themes driven by the Board/Management, supported by appropriate systems, controls and mechanisms with checks and balances to ensure that there is no compromise on these principles enshrined in the DNA of the enterprise across all levels of the organisation.

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT

Statements in this Annual Report, particularly those related to the Management Discussion and Analysis, describing our Companys objectives, projections, estimates and expectations, may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable laws and regulations. Although the expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, the actual results may differ.