British chain Pret A Manger to launch in India, marking milestone between UK–India investment corridor

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This comes as economic powerhouse recorded $82.3bn worth of deals in Q2, despite global volume being down 8.7%

Gaurav Singh, founder of the largest bilateral investment back across UK/India, JPIN, explains why UK businesses are looking East for investment opportunities to scale up.


Yesterday, India’s Reliance Industries announced a franchise partnership with Pret A Manger to launch and build the British chain in India. This marks a huge step for UK businesses looking East for opportunities in scaling up, as Britain’s largest-ever trade agreement lies on the horizon with one of the fastest-growing economies. Reliance Brands Ltd (RBL) – run by one of India’s most affluential men, Mukhesh Ambani – is India’s largest listed conglomerate, and already has a number of partnerships with multiple global brands such as Jimmy Choo and Burberry. This partnership demonstrates yet another key milestone between the India and UK corridor, highlighting the significance of establishing a strategic relationship with the nation. India’s booming economy has proven to be a vital lifeline for British businesses looking to scale up and expand onto a global scale. 

Earlier this month, American conglomerate, Apollo Global Management, made a binding bid with Reliance Industries to acquire high street chemist, Boots – owned by US retailer, Walgreens Boots Alliance – which is valued at between £5bn and £6bn. This comes as India recorded a record $82.3bn in mergers and acquisitions in the last quarter, despite global volume being down 8.7% – according to Bloomberg. The appetite of strategic investors has continued to fuel the nation’s economy, and now, UK businesses are looking to their significant pool of capital for investment opportunities. Despite the sharp curb of global M&As, catalysed by the effects of a worldwide inflation and a stock market rout, India has continued to break records in growth, and the country is set to overtake China as the fastest-growing economy by the end of the year.

More importantly, India has been a key player in providing the UK with various aspects of economic and trade support, to assist with combating the severe talent shortages in the IT sector, and the dire lag in digital services. Earlier this year, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced £1bn in new commercial deals with India, with hopes of generating 11,000 new jobs in the UK. As businesses across Britain continue to navigate the implications of worldwide ‘stagflation’, India – dubbed as Asia’s Silicon Valley – has proven to be an anchor for firms looking to expand, however don’t have the means of capital to do so. Their young and dynamic population has given birth to some of the world’s most successful CEOs, and a relationship between both countries will likely be integral to lift Britain out of the current economic slump. 

Gaurav Singh, founder of JPIN, comments:

“It’s clear that some of the most well-known economies around the world are taking significant interest in establishing an economic relationship with India. The country has continued to show signs of real development with record growth in exports and foreign investment. Pret A Manger’s expansion to the country is a great example of this, and I expect to see many more companies following suit in the coming months and years.

“With the pandemic having created a unique and arguably, challenging landscape for British businesses, India presents as a key driver in providing a sufficient means of capital for firms looking for opportunities to scale up.


“India’s record-breaking quarter for M&A activity clearly illustrates the country’s wealth in investment opportunities. As one of the leading hubs of IT and technology, I expect to see an increasing number of investors turning East in search of funding opportunities that can assist with scaling UK companies in such a bleak socio-economic landscape.”

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