Spar International, the global symbol retailer, has confirmed the plans of its local venture in India to open 25 stores in the country by 2012.

The retailer, which formed its current venture in India three years ago, is set to open its fourth store in the country next week.

Spar International is headquartered in the Netherlands but allows the local operations in each of its 33 markets a degree of independence in running the stores in each country.

The main functions of Spar's head office are to co-ordinate its international network, share best practice between different units and develop the international presence of the company's namesake brand.

A spokesperson for Spar told just-food the company's business model meant it - and its local partner Max Hypermarkets - was confident enough to push forward with plans for expansion in India.

"The fact that we work with local partners is proving to be absolutely invaluable," the spokeperson said.

India remains an attractive - if long-term - play for multinational retailers. Tesco and Wal-Mart are among those who have teamed up with local retailers to gain a foothold in India.

Meanwhile, domestic retailers like Aditya Birla Retail have set out their own stall for expansion in an economy forecast to grow at around 9% this year.

However, not every foreign retailer has enjoyed success in India. Last week, South African retailer Shoprite Holdings hinted the company was likely to quit India over frustrations at the rules governing foreign ownership of local businesses.