Retail Chain Stores Location using Integrated Interval-Valued Intuitionistic Fuzzy AHP and TOPSIS: Case Study Ofogh Kourosh Stores

Document Type : Original Article


1 PhD student, Department of Industrial Engineering, Faculty of Technology and Engineering, Al-Zahra University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Associate Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering, Faculty of Technology and Engineering, Al-Zahra University, Tehran, Iran.


Introduction: Retailers are powerful agents in product distribution due to their proximity to final consumers and their potential to create markets. Choosing the location of a retail store is a strategic decision and a long-term investment, impacting both customer satisfaction and company profitability amidst market changes and fierce competition. This study aims to develop a method for selecting the best retail store locations for Ofogh Kourosh by strategically ranking potential locations using criteria such as population, store location characteristics, economic considerations, and competition.
Methods: Given the increasing complexity of retail store location selection and the uncertainty in evaluating criteria, a multi-criteria decision-making structure is used alongside a fuzzy intuitionistic approach. Intuitionistic fuzzy numbers extend traditional fuzzy numbers by incorporating a hesitation degree in addition to membership and non-membership degrees, better modeling the uncertainty faced by decision-makers. In this study, five main criteria are considered: cost, competition, traffic density, vehicle traffic volume, physical characteristics, and store location. These criteria were identified through expert interviews. Twelve sub-criteria, including rent cost, equipment cost, competitor strength, number of competitors, distance to competitors, vehicle traffic volume, pedestrian traffic volume, store size, parking space, proximity to main streets, proximity to commercial centers, and proximity to residential complexes, were selected to choose the best location among five potential sites. The proposed method integrates the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) and the Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) based on interval-valued intuitionistic fuzzy sets to evaluate criteria and rank the proposed options. The AHP method, based on interval-valued intuitionistic fuzzy sets, was used to consider uncertainty in decision-making and to calculate the weight of the criteria. The TOPSIS method was applied to prioritize the proposed options for locating a new retail store. Region 4 of Tehran city, the most populous area in the city, was considered for the case study. Ofogh Kourosh has 40 stores in this region, supplied by two large warehouses.
Results and discussion: The numerical results indicate that the sub-criteria of rent cost (from the cost criterion) and proximity to commercial centers (from the store location criterion) were the most and least important criteria, respectively. Among the five candidate locations, locations four and one were ranked highest and lowest for establishing new stores. To validate the proposed method, the evaluation results were compared with those obtained using the AHP-WASPAS method based on interval-valued intuitionistic fuzzy sets. Both methods identified location four as the best site for a new retail store and location one as the least suitable due to its location and competitor conditions.
Conclusion: The study demonstrates that using a combined AHP-TOPSIS method based on interval-valued intuitionistic fuzzy sets is effective for evaluating and ranking potential retail store locations. This approach accounts for the uncertainty in decision-making and provides a comprehensive evaluation of various criteria, ultimately aiding strategic planning and investment decisions in the retail sector.


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