Interview with Krishna Chandak & Ashish Naik

Krishna Chandak & Ashish Naik
Krishna Chandak & Ashish Naik

How many collections are made in a year? How many styles are there in each collection?

Krishna Chandak: We will be expanding our product range considerably in 2018-19. We will typically have two seasons with a very tight collection of our core product range of high quality staples (tops , bottoms, accessories) in addition to two or three new categories every season.  Our focus at this point is to maintain the material integrity of our range.

Is the parent company into exports? What is the amount exported every year?

Ashish Naik: Our principal business remains Tego. We have executed some export orders for Tego in GCC countries, Malaysia  and Israel. We also sell on Amazon USA.

Do you have your own manufacturing units or do you outsource it all? If you outsource it, what are the top five traits that you look for in a vendor?

Ashish Naik: We are asset light and outsource our manufacturing. However, we do work on licensing various unique technologies for the region. These are some of the things we look for in our manufacturing partners:
1. Quality control focus and relationships with independent and third party testing labs
2. Product lines they have developed
3. Machines
4. Their sourcing partners and ability to execute on new concepts
5. Compliances

Which apparel or accessory category has been faring the best for your brand?

Ashish Naik: All our products are unique and have done well for us. Our SweatCharged has done phenomenally well.
Our accessories (towels/mats/socks) have top ranking on Amazon India, with 'Amazon Choice' badge.

How big is your retail presence - both brick-and-mortar and online?

Krishna Chandak: We began our journey in 2016 through multi-brand sports door at Planet Sports (Future) and SportXS, when we only had the Tegofit Sports towel and the Tego SweatCharged T-shirt. This gave us a presence in about 40 premium mall locations across India. In 2017, we added distributors for south, north (ex Delhi), east and north-east regions. This has given us placement in 80 top sport doors across India. We also have presence in multi-brand retail chains like Total Sports in Mumbai, Champs Sports in Goa and Champions Sports in Pune.

We have undertaken institutional sales like 20,000 towels for Tata Mumbai marathon Procam and tennis towels for Tata Maharashtra Open organised by the Maharashtra State Lawn Tennis Association.

We are currently working on a huge opportunity with a major FMCG brand to use our SweatCharged T-shirt for their year-long fitness-based campaign. Their campaign slogan will emerge through sweat on the T-shirt fabric.

What has the sale been like on your website? Which are your best selling products and which price-points sell the best?

Krishna Chandak: Our focus in 2018 is to build our direct-to-consumer channel www.tego.fit. Sale on our website is building up. We are seeing 30 per cent conversion on our website and are working aggressively to build our content engine to create a more engaging customer experience.

How have you fared on online marketplaces? Any plans to go omni-channel?

Krishna Chandak: Our products have best seller rankings on Amazon India. We listed on Myntra in March 2018. We also sell to very targeted fitness communities like the GOQii platform.

Omni-channel is an end goal for any brand today. We are working out an experience centre model and discussing with mall owners to evaluate.

What are the advertising, marketing and promotion plans?

Krishna Chandak: Digital marketing, public relations and below the line (BTL) activities and in-store activations will be the primary activities over the next 12 months. We are also working on building an evolved brand identity on social channels, collaborating with like-minded brands and influencers to emphasize on our positioning as a premium activewear brand.

What is your strategy to counter competition from international brands in this category? What challenges do you face as a young brand?

Krishna Chandak: Every major consumer market has seen independent challenger brands come up as they are not trying to offer everything to everyone. We have taken a 'first-in-kind' approach for the Indian marketplace, and our product development has focused on scalable niche - addressing user pain points for our target group of 'everyday athletes' that has given us a hook in retail and established our brand authenticity. Our pan-India retail footprint and over 200 positive reviews on Amazon across products (with deliveries to over 150 cities and towns) will give you an idea on our strong product-market fit.

A major part of our success will depend on our ability to grow fast and constantly keep innovating.

How have the last two fiscals been and what are your expectations for the next two?

Ashish Naik: We don't disclose numbers. However, to give you some perspective, we have approximately 30,000 customers across all channels with an average selling price of Rs 1,000.

What are your future plans? Do you plan to get into wearable tech?

Krishna Chandak: We are building a premium activewear brand for everyday athletes. We are always thinking about pain points the everyday athlete faces  while keeping an eye on new technologies, manufacturing processes, and designs to develop new products. Wearable tech is on our radar. (HO)
Published on: 11/04/2018

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.

F2F NewsLetter

Subscribe today and get the latest information on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel.

 Fibre2Fashion Monthly Newsletter
 Upcoming Trade fairs & Events Monthly
 F2F Weekly Insights
 Technical Textiles eNews Weekly