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Pantaloons now a kidswear player too
08
Apr '16
Kidswear business may not be child's play. But that hasn't stopped Aditya Birla Group's Pantaloons from venturing into children's wear with the launch of Pantaloons Kids.

Pantaloons is currently piloting apparel and lifestyle stores for children in Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Jabalpur, Kolkata and Chandanpur in West Bengal as it aims to take a chunk of the Rs 75,000 crore kidswear market, according to a report in Livemint.

“We realized there is an actual shortage for kids' shopping and this is true even in malls where there are over 70 stores catering to menswear and womenswear. Even department stores are for adults largely,” said Shital Mehta, Pantaloons Retail CEO.
Mehta said the company decided to explore the opportunity after research showed there was no serious focus on the kidswear, category.

This led to the launch of Pantaloons Kids to target a market which has become one of the fastest growing apparel retail segments, expanding 25 per cent per annum on a like-to-like basis.

Pantaloons may be the new kid on the block, but there are other new entrants.

In January, Mahindra Retail announced a tie-up with US-based children's clothing, gifts and accessories company Carter's Inc. to bring the latter's range to its chain of BabyOye stores across India.

Last August, The Children's Place (TCP), a $1.3 billion US specialty retailer, opened its first store in Bengaluru in partnership with Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd. TCP has five stand-alone stores, besides seven shop-in-shops at department store chain Shoppers Stop. It plans to add 15 more stores during the fiscal 2017.

Another brand, US Polo Kids from the Arvind Lifestyle portfolio, will clock Rs.100 crore in revenue in fiscal 2017 within three years of launch, said J. Suresh, Managing Director, Arvind Lifestyle.
Even Gap, which Arvind Lifestyle launched in August in India, gets one-third of its overall revenue from the kidswear category.

In the past decade, retailers Spykar Lifestyles Pvt. Ltd, Raymond Ltd, Lilliput Kidswear Ltd and Koutons Retail India Ltd were unable to crack the kidswear retail segment and exited from the category.

According to Govind Shrikhande, Managing Director, Shoppers Stop, parents didn't spend as much on high-priced brands four years ago, but today, parents want their children to look fashionable and are hence they are buying these brands.

Pantaloons believes such sentiments will fuel the brand's growth. CEO Mehta is also banking on aggressive pricing to get ahead with close to 80 per cent of merchandise to be priced below Rs 500. That would be lower than the competition with Gap retailing at an average price point of Rs.1,200-1,300 and US Polo at Rs. 800. (SH)

 

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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