Regional Brand

Taking on the giants

Can Vijay Sales hold its own against bigger electronic retail chains?

Soumik Kar

It’s about 5 pm on a weekend and all four floors of the Vijay Sales store at Kandivli, a west Mumbai suburb, are teeming with people looking at electronics purchases. Amid this crowd, it wouldn’t be surprising if a solitary older gentleman, dressed simply in trousers and an untucked shirt, were overlooked. But as soon as he walks in, an employee rushes forward to greet him. He strolls around and gestures to another member of the staff, who listens intently and immediately hurries to lower the volume and change channels on the television sets blaring all around. A couple of shoppers turn to look curiously at what makes this seemingly unremarkable senior so special. At 77, Nanu Gupta may have passed on the day-to-day management of the Vijay Sales chain of electronics stores to his two sons, but he is still very involved with the business he started 46 years ago. He visits the chain’s 24 stores in Mumbai at least once a month and employees point out that on exceptionally busy days, Gupta even chips in as salesman and mans the cash register.