The Mall Group plans to open supermarkets in shopping complexes outside its own.
The move is in line with the boom in community and neighbourhood malls, which have been opening rapidly in certain locations in Bangkok and other cities.
Pira A Pirom, The Mall Group's senior chief merchandising officer for supermarkets, said the company would undertake a serious expansion of its two supermarket brands - Home Fresh Mart and Gourmet Market - in malls operated by independent developers.
The company last year opened its first Gourmet Market outlet outside its own shopping malls at K Village mall on Sukhumvit Road Soi 26, he said.
The Mall Group yesterday announced that it would open a second Gourmet Market supermarket, at Terminal21 shopping mall, officially on October 11. On Sukhumvit Road next to Asoke Intersection, the nine-storey shopping mall is expected to attract about 100,000 visitors a day.
Prasert Sriuranpong, executive director of L&H Property, the developer of Terminal21, said the mall was a Bt6-billion investment on a prime 9-rai plot on Sukhumvit Road. The development comprises a nine-storey shopping mall, and a 1,100-car parking facility. Besides the 2,500-square-metre Gourmet Market supermarket, confirmed major attractions include an eight-screen cinema multiplex, fitness and spa centre, food court, more than 50 restaurants, and more than 600 fashion outlets.
"We expect Terminal21 shopping mall to earn about Bt800 million annually from rental of its retail space with expectation of break-even point in eight years," Prasert said. Pira said The Mall Group had positioned the Gourmet Market brand as a premium-end supermarket. Meanwhile, Home Fresh Mart targets more budget-minded consumers.
"In addition to the second outlet to be opened at Terminal21, we will open another Gourmet Market at Promenade lifestyle mall, also developed by L&H Property. Located close to Fashion Island shopping complex on Ram Inthra Road, the shopping mall will opened in February next year," Pira said.
"We also plan to open one or two Home Fresh Mart supermarkets next year."
Home Fresh Marts carry about 40,000 products on average, while Gourmet Markets carry between 50,000 and 60,000 items on average.
The Mall Group's supermarket business has achieved significant growth so far this year, at 14 per cent, Pira said. "We expect our supermarket sales to reach Bt14 billion this year, of which about 30 per cent will be contributed by the Gourmet Market brand, and the other 70 per cent by Home Fresh Mart."