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Sri Lanka’s Odel plans mega mall, closes outlets

ECONOMYNEXT – The new owner of Sri Lankan retailer Odel PLC has closed down some of its stores but plans to build a ‘Mega Mall’ of 300,000 square feet adjoining its present flagship outlet in Colombo.

Odel chairman Ashok Pathirage, whose Softlogic Group bought the retailer last year, said luxury retailers are benefitting from income gains among the top earners in the island and are thriving.

“Growth in this sector is a key factor in driving expansion across the board,” he told shareholders in the firm’s annual report.

Odel has a chain of 20 fashion stores with a footfall of around 5,000 people daily.

“Whilst we serve customers through 20 stores, our new business model aims at smaller outlets and one big mall,” Pathirage said.

“We have closed down some of our bigger outlets, including Maharagama and Jaela, with other outlets currently under evaluation.”

The company aims to upgrade the Ward Place Odel flagship store to improve quality of offerings to customers and plans to build a ‘Mega Mall’ adjoining it along with car park amenities, he said. The mall is projected to be completed within three years.

Pathirage also said he intend to bring his Softlogic Brands portfolio to Odel.  (Colombo/September 1 2015)

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