With a retail market valued at $330 billion, India has been identifed as the next destination for French supermarket chain, Carrefour.
The firm, which owns the bicycle brand, Top Bike, plans to open its cash and carry business in India by 2009.
Herve Clech'h, managing director of the firm, said: "We are planning one or two stores by the second half of 2009 and add more as the business grows."
Franchisees will be appointed by the Carrefour owned Master Franchise Company.
Carrefour India's general manager Gerard Freiszmuth said: "We are talking to five to six Indian groups for this. Carrefour hopes to finalise the Indian franchisee for the multi-brand retailing business, in which no foreign equity is permitted in the country, over the next couple of months."
in a bid to protect domestic stores, India doesn't allow foregin equity in multi-brand stores. However, it currently permits up to 51 per cent foreign equity in single-brand retail trade businesses.
As yet, the firm has not finalised its investment plan.