Clothing exporter chalks out big plans for domestic brand
Mr Naseer Humayun, MD, Indian Designs
The global economic crisis of 2008 and the fluctuating rupee have made the strongest of apparel exporters go weak in the knees, and in order to maintain the ongoing operations of their plant, they have slowly started exploring the domestic markets. Infact, since the onset of the economic crisis, the Union Textile Minister, Mr Dayanidhi Maran has been exhorting the garment manufacturers and exporters to concentrate on the Rs 330 billion strong, Indian domestic textile and garment market.
A Bangalore based clothing exporter, Indian Designs whose global clientele includes the likes of H&M and Old Navy, had launched a western causal clothing brand way back in 1998 for the domestic market, by the name of 'Identiti'. Buoyed by the success of the brand, it now plans to increase the store count by around 30-40 exclusive brand outlets (EBO's) from its existing 13 EBO's in the next two years, by setting up stores in Southern Indian states like Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.
Speaking to fibre2fashion about his experiences and plans for the brand in the Indian market, Mr Naseer Humayun, Managing Director of Indian Designs said, “Identiti was launched in the year 1998 with one store at Commercial Street in Bangalore. Today the brand operates through 13 EBO's, 9 in Bangalore and one each at Mysore, Kochi, Mangalore & Chickamanglur.
“Besides the EBO business, the brand has started retailing at Bangalore Central – 2. The USP for the brand has always been great fashion / range at truly affordable prices. The response received in cities like Kochi & Mysore has been extremely encouraging. Going forward, we wish to clearly establish the brand in the minds of the consumer that, here is a brand that compliments my personality, offers the latest in fashion at prices that are affordable and a range that is truly a temptation for the discerning consumer.”
Revealing future plans of his retail operations, he informed, “Based on the potential of the growing domestic market, the synergy between the demographics of the country and the target consumer for the brand and the encouraging response received in cities outside Bangalore where the brand was launched recently, Identiti plans to open another 30-40 stores in the next two years across South India taking the franchisee route. The long term plan would be to become a brand with a pan India presence retailing through EBO's, MBO's and large format stores.”
Commenting on the impact of currency fluctuation on the business of apparel exports, he opined, “The biggest impact of currency fluctuation for exporters is the uncertainty about the receivables. In the present regime of floating currency, exporters do expect that there will be fluctuations in the currency. Exporters can deal with a situation where there is a variation of a few percentage points.
"However, if the variation is 25-30 percent like in the last couple of years there is a lot of uncertainty for the exporters as well as the buyers. This uncertainty generally has a negative impact on the business environment. The government can help by ensuring that the fluctuations in the currency are minimized”, he concluded by saying.
Fibre2fashion News Desk - India