Interview with Smita Murarka

Face2Face
Smita Murarka
Smita Murarka
Head - Marketing and E-commerce
MAS Brands India (Amante)
MAS Brands India (Amante)

Lingerie industry growth is being fuelled by premium brands

The lingerie industry holds immense potential in the Indian market as the buying behaviour of consumers change. Amante, a leading premium lingerie brand in India owned by Mas Brands, has a story to tell for the lingerie industry in the country. Smita Murarka, Head - Marketing and E-commerce of MAS Brands India talks about growth with Fibre2Fashion.com.

What is the size of the global lingerie market? What is the percentage pie claimed by Amante?

The Indian lingerie market is estimated to be worth 11,000 crore. The premium segment comprises 20 per cent of that share. Within it, Amante is among the top two brands. With an average growth rate of 55 per cent over the last two years, Amante is the fastest growing premium lingerie brand.

What has been the transformation in the lingerie market in recent years?

The Indian lingerie market is highly fragmented, and dominated by mass market brands. However, over the years, penetration of quality brands has increased and consumers are moving up the value chain. The influx of online shopping has made it easier for brands to reach out to a wider audience and enhance consumer experience in shopping. Industry growth is being fuelled by premium brands like Amante which offer international quality products at affordable pricing.

What changes have you noticed in the perception of Indian women on lingerie?

Earlier, lingerie was perceived as a basic product for coverage. Consumers were only concerned with price. However, consumers are evolving. With a wider choice in western fashion, they realise the need for wearing well-suited lingerie from a reputed brand to be able to project a confident appearance. Thus, brands like Amante which give an unmatched combination in international styling and value are rapidly growing.

What are your views on the current discounting strategies adopted by the lingerie industry in India, and what are your plans in this direction?

As a brand, we follow a non-discounted policy for all our core merchandise. Like any other international brand, our aged merchandise is discounted. So, we can make way for new styles. Similar discounts are followed at the end of a season across channels.

What are your expansion plans in India five years down the line?

After being successful in India across different retailing formats, Amante launched its first exclusive boutique in Mumbai in December. We aim to launch 25 more boutiques within two years to give consumers a superior shopping experience. The store marks the introduction of our premium line of swimwear, sleepwear and sportswear, along with a wide range of lingerie. We are looking at expanding the brand across these categories and geographies. Apart from India and Sri Lanka, the brand will soon be launched in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and other ASEAN markets to make it a regional player.

What would be the retailing strategies adopted for Amante's expansion in India?

We are an omni-channel brand available across platforms. We will focus on building our own platforms by rapidly launching exclusive stores across cities and strengthening our website further. Apart from this, we will continue to expand and grow along with retailers in their formats to serve our consumers wherever they are present.

What is the investment made in this direction up till now?

Over the next two years, our capital expenditure is going to be substantial as we will be launching 25 stores. Each will be exquisitely designed with very expensive materials to make our consumers feel pampered and give them an unmatched shopping experience in the world of intimate wear.

What are your expectations from the coming two fiscals?

We are looking to grow by 50 per cent in the next two years, with the aim of becoming the largest premium wear lingerie brand in the country.
Published on: 11/01/2016

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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