The start of a chainWhen Min Bahadur Gurung, chairman and managing director of Bhat-Bhateni Group, started a small grocery shop in 1984 with an investment of Rs 35000, he never thought it would one day become the biggest retail brand in the country.
When Min Bahadur Gurung, chairman and managing director of Bhat-Bhateni Group, started a small grocery shop in 1984 with an investment of Rs 35000, he never thought it would one day become the biggest retail brand in the country. However, Gurung without any family background in business had the courage to quit a secure job at Nepal Bank Limited to start a one-room grocery shop in an area of 120 square feet. Started as a mom-and-pop store, Bhat-Bhateni has transformed into the largest supermarket chain in Nepal with stores at 14 different locations throughout the country with more than 50,000 footfall daily.
With over 4500 staff, daily sales of Rs 35 million and around 120,000 products showcased, Bhat-Bhateni Super Market is the retail giant of the country and no other store even comes close to it in terms of the volume of business. Bhat-Bhateni has become the store of choice for a large section of population from all walks of life due to its accessibility, large number of choices, low prices and quick service.
There is probably no other store in the country which sells everything from groceries, fresh fruits and vegetables to an extensive choice of kitchenware, clothing, sports, toys and electrical items. All these items under a single roof has been Bhat-Bhateni’s sales pitch for years.
Gurung’s story is one of the most intriguing stories of an individual from the Nepali private sector achieving paramount success in a relatively short amount of time.
Despite achieving significant success, Gurung does not anticipate slowing down and is planning to open many more new outlets in the Kathmandu Valley and across the country in the upcoming years.
Apart from expandinghis retail chain, Gurung also hopes to establish farmer co-operatives which are estimated to employ 50,000 people which will likely make Bhat-Bhateni the largest corporate tax payer in the country.
— By Bibek Subedi