India - The Top Retail Destination

 The retail market in India has undergone a major transformation and has witnessed tremendous growth in the last 10 years

  • The Indian retail market is estimated to reach 1.5 tn by 2030, from $0.793 tn in 2020, adding nearly $700 bn in market size in this decade
  • India currently has the 4th Largest retail market in the world
  • India's e-commerce industry set to grow 84% by 2024

India ranks among the best countries to invest in Retail space. Factors that make India so attractive include the second largest population in the world, a middle-income class of ~158 households, increasing urbanisation, rising household incomes, connected rural consumers and increasing consumer spending.

  • India ranked No. 2 in the Global Retail Development Index (GRDI) in 2019.
  • The retail sector in India has contributed ~800 Bn to India’s GDP in FY20 and has employed 8% of its workforce (35+ Mn). It is expected to create 25 Mn new jobs by 2030
  • Increasing demand for organised retail space has helped create a capacity of ~120 Mn square feet (MSF) in retail space across major Indian cities. Major Indian cities include Delhi (23.7 MSF) and Mumbai (16.7msf)
  • FMCG, apparel & footwear, and consumer electronics are the largest retail segments, constituting 65%, 10% and 9% respectively of the retail market
  • The E-Commerce market is expected to touch $350 Bn in GMV by 2030 
  • India’s digital economy is expected to touch $800 Bn by 2030
  • Online shoppers in India are expected to reach ~500Mn in 2030 from +150Mn in 2020 
  • Currently, there are 1.2 Million daily e-commerce transactions. 
  • The total value of digital transactions in India for FY20 was $ 537 Mn 
  • US$ 72 K worth of merchandise was sold on E-commerce Websites. This figure has tripled since 2015

Recent policy changes allow 100% FDI under the automatic route for single-brand retail trading, and allow such entities to commence e-commerce operations prior to starting brick & mortar retail, provided they do so within 2 years of the start of online retail.


For further details, please refer FDI Policy

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    Contribution to India's GDP

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    Share in India's employment

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    Rise in consumption

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    Growth in organized retail

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India is the 4th largest preferred retail destination globally

India to have 974 mn Internet users by 2025 

Growth in income will transform India from a bottom of the pyramid economy to a truly middle-class led one, with consumer spending growing from $1.5 tn today to nearly $6 tn by 2030

Industry Scenario

The Indian e-commerce industry is expected to cross the $350 bn in GMV by 2030.

India’s retail market is estimated to reach ~1.5 tn by 2030, from $0.793 tn in 2020, driven by socio-demographic and economic factors such as urbanisation, income growth and rise in nuclear families. On the other hand, the Indian e-commerce industry is expected to cross $350 bn mark by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 23%.

In first half of 2021, e-commerce accounted for nearly a third of several electronic categories, almost half of smartphones sold, and about a fifth of all apparel sales in India. In 2020, e-commerce and consumer internet companies raised more than $8 bn in PE/VC capital across 400 deals (excluding investments in Jio). India will become the 3rd largest online retail market by 2030, with an estimated annual gross merchandise value of $350 bn. 

The Indian retail market is largely unorganized. However, the organised Indian retail market has increased by ~50% between 2012-2020 to its current value of nearly 12% of total retail. The modern Indian retail industry is expected to grow at a 15% CAGR to reach 18% by 2025. Major retail categories (by % organised retail penetration) such as apparel & accessories (18%), consumer electronics (6%) and home & living (6%) will drive the increase in organised retail this decade. 


  • Growing income

    By 2030 India will add 140 mn middle-income and 21 mn high-income households – Leading to a huge emerging middle class.

  • Increased online spending

    Online shoppers in India are expected to reach ~500mn in 2030 from +150mn in 2020

  • Growth of rural consumption

    Rural per capita consumption will grow 4.3 times by 2030, compared to 3.5 times in urban areas

  • Young millennial households

    India will add nearly 90 million new households headed by millennials, who were born into liberalized India. The average age of the country by 2025 will be 29 with the world’s largest skilled manpower pool of 600 million+ by 2025.


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Asked Questions

Are we allowed to sell products of a sub brand if we have a Single Brand Retail Trade (SBRT) license?

No, any addition to the product/product categories to be sold under 'Single Brand' would require a fresh approval of the Government.

For more information, click here.

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Describe the term wholesale cash and carry as per the Foreign Direct Investment policy.

Cash & Carry Wholesale trading/Wholesale trading, would mean sale of goods/merchandise to retailers, industrial, commercial, institutional or other professional business users or to other wholesalers and related subordinated service providers.

For more information, click here.

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What is a marketplace and inventory based model of e-commerce?

1) Marketplace based model of e-commerce means providing an information technology platform by an e-commerce entity on a digital & electronic network to act as a facilitator between the buyer and seller.

2) Inventory based model of e-commerce means an e-commerce activity where inventory of goods and services is owned by e-commerce entity and is sold to the consumers directly.

For more information, click here.

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What are the different states that allow Multi Brand Retail Trading (MBRT) and are there any clauses under the rule?

As per para of the FDI Policy, 2017, the following states allow MBRT subject to the conditions mentioned in the policy:
 i.      Andhra Pradesh
 ii.     Assam
 iii.    Delhi
 iv.    Haryana
 v.     Himachal Pradesh
 vi.    Jammu &amp Kashmir
 vii.   Karnataka
 viii.  Maharashtra
 ix.    Manipur
 x.     Rajasthan
 xi.    Uttarakhand
 xii.   Daman & Diu and Dadra and Nagar Haveli (Union Territories)

For more information, click here.

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How much FDI is allowed under single brand product retail?

100% FDI is allowed under single brand product retail via automatic route.

For more information, click here.

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