Vodafone Idea (VIL) on Sunday said it has rolled out 300 new-format ‘Vi Shops‘ across multiple towns in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, West Bengal and UP West, in line with its expansion blueprint to digitally connect the rural population. VIL plans to further strengthen its local presence and enhance engagement with mobile users by expanding its retail footprint to cover more rural markets in the coming months. “To ramp up its retail footprint at the sub district level, Vi has rolled out 300 new format ‘Vi Shops‘ across multiple towns in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, West Bengal and UP West,” the company said in a statement.
Customers in Indapur, Maharashtra; Hapur in Western UP; Basirhat in West Bengal; Usilampatti in Tamil Nadu; Payyoli in Kerala; and hundreds of other such towns will have access to quick, face-to-face service along with a range of differentiated products and offerings, it added.
The Vi Shops concept for Tier 3 towns is intended to deliver a uniform experience to local customers, enabling quick support and handholding.
The design of the new format store is in line with signature elements that define existing Vi Stores in urban locations. “Vi Shops will offer the entire bouquet of Vi prepaid products and services and enable the less tech-savvy users to avail Vi’s service across the table, leading to improved customer experience and closer engagement,” it said.
With this, the company also intends to strengthen engagement with rural consumers with the slew of offerings, curated as a result of partnerships with domain experts in areas such as jobs and skilling, government exam preparation, and English language skills, among others.
Abhijit Kishore, Chief Operating Officer of Vodafone Idea, noted that a large segment of customers in rural India still prefer the comfort and familiarity of face-to-face service through the physical retail format.
“Further, rural has been driving the growth of mobile internet usage in India. To cater to this demand, we are taking a renewed approach to our rural retail strategy, through our Vi Shop concept, which will enable millions of Indians to digitally connect for a better future,” Kishore added.