Booker Wholesale is venturing overseas with plans to open a cash & carry in Mumbai in the summer.

The depot would serve stores, food stalls and the restaurant trade in India, with an emphasis on fresh foods, pulses and staples, said CEO Charles Wilson.

"Booker has a good relationship with Asian shopkeepers and restaurateurs," he said. "Many said Booker would do well in India so a year ago I sent someone out to investigate. We plan to open in the summer."

The operation would be solely run by Booker, but Wilson added he would

not be surprised if the company was approached by potential partners.

Booker this week reported a 6.4% rise in fourth-quarter sales. Like-for-like non-tobacco sales rose 10.2% and tobacco sales rose 1.2%. The symbol group Premier continued to do well, it said, with more than 40 retailers interested in new small store format Premier Express.