Tran­sit Retail Max­i­mum Con­trib­u­tor to Over­all Rev­enue of Da Mi­lano

The brand will be com­plet­ing 30 suc­cess­ful years in In­dia in the year 2019 and its jour­ney is noth­ing short of en­tre­pre­neur­ial ex­cel­lence and as­tute retail sense…

Images Retail - - CONTENTS - – By Charu Lamba

Da Mi­lano, one of In­dia’s lead­ing lux­ury ac­ces­sory brands, started its jour­ney from a few SKU’S of leather ac­ces­sories and has to­day a one-stop des­ti­na­tion for all af­ford­able lux­ury leather retail prod­ucts. The brand will be com­plet­ing 30 suc­cess­ful years in In­dia in 2019 and its jour­ney is noth­ing short of en­tre­pre­neur­ial ex­cel­lence and as­tute retail sense.

Ac­cord­ing to Sahil Ma­lik, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Da Mi­lano, “We have tra­versed more than a quar­ter cen­tury in­no­vat­ing prod­ucts and meet­ing cus­tomer as­pi­ra­tions with de­signs that have util­ity, and pro­vide all leather ac­ces­sory needs of a dis­cern­ing client.”

“From clutch to sling bags for ladies, from wal­lets to dif­fer­en­ti­ated com­puter bags, from leather ac­ces­sories to leather lug­gage, from a sim­ple de­signer belt to a leather jacket, from a per­fectly crafted hand bag, each prod­uct is de­signed blend­ing in­no­va­tive crafts­man­ship with au­to­ma­tion. In­no­va­tive ser­vice de­liv­ery is at the heart of Da Mi­lano retail,” he adds.

Evolv­ing In­dian Lux­ury Mar­ket

As the in­dus­try has evolved over the years, where lux­ury and qual­ity sat­is­fac­tion is more in de­mand than ever, the de­mand for Da Mi­lano prod­ucts has also in­creased with each pro­gress­ing year.

Shar­ing the rea­son be­hind in­creas­ing de­mand of lux­ury prod­ucts, Ma­lik says, “Over the years Da Mi­lano has ob­served that handbags have moved from be­ing an ac­ces­sory in wardrobe to be­com­ing the brand with badge value in last 30 years. Handbags are to­day van­ity show­cases and a means to ex­press in­di­vid­u­al­ity in world of fast fash­ion where ap­parel has be­come more monochro­matic, fash­ion trend changes far more fre­quent and brand­ing is the key driver in­stead of wardrobe price or qual­ity. Last but not the least, mar­ket size has grown mul­ti­ple times over last three decades with each cus­tomer car­ry­ing mul­ti­ple handbags to suit mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions.”

And to cash on this evolv­ing lux­ury mar­ket, the brand will soon be launch­ing new prod­uct cat­e­gories like Spec­ta­cle Cov­ers which dou­ble up as bag charms and GPS and Smart­phone lock en­abled travel prod­ucts.

The Brand’s USP

Grow­ing dras­ti­cally in length and breadth, Da Mi­lano has en­sured its pres­ence in every dis­tin­guished mall and high-street present in the coun­try. The key dif­fer­en­tia­tors that pro­nounce the brand’s suc­cess are the blend in the ar­ray of de­sign with crafts­man­ship op­ti­mally styled and fin­ished with state-of-art ma­chin­ery; meet cus­tomer as­pi­ra­tion of prod­uct util­ity with style and fi­nesse. Also, de­liv­er­ing of front-end ser­vice with an ethos that has cus­tomer ori­en­ta­tion to ex­plain every fea­ture and prod­uct de­tail to the cus­tomer.

The Cus­tomer

The brand has a ver­sa­tile range for both men and women. It is for fash­ion­fo­cused peo­ple, for young women, smart ex­ec­u­tives, at leisure trav­el­ers, and senior cit­i­zens. In short from ap­parel, to bags to ac­ces­sories, the range takes care of all leather fash­ion needs of all be­tween the age groups of 14 to 75 years.

“A change in pro­file of the cus­tomer, in dif­fer­ent sea­sons or oth­er­wise is there­fore no chal­lenge for us. Rather it is an op­por­tu­nity to duck sea­sonal va­garies and bol­ster sale. We are quick on turn out time for a range,” ex­plains Ma­lik.

Lo­ca­tion Strat­egy

The brand chooses lo­ca­tion for every store with care, a place that has high traf­fic count – malls, high streets and even air­ports. However, malls af­ford a more fam­ily ex­pe­ri­ence and makes it very easy for cus­tomers to shop across brands in the same cat­e­gory and com­pare to make a wise choice.

“De­vel­op­ing and grow­ing retail op­er­a­tions at high foot­fall lo­ca­tions is about cus­tomer pro­fil­ing, events, prod­uct range that blends with cus­tomer as­pi­ra­tions and about quick adap­ta­tion of sea­sonal vari­a­tion and cus­tomer re­quire­ment. High foot­fall ar­eas are pro­filed for cus­tomers and their as­pi­ra­tions, their feed­back is quickly trans­lated by de­sign and the pro­duc­tion team to roll out prod­ucts at op­ti­mum price points,” as­serts Ma­lik.

He fur­ther adds, “Shop-in­shops is still not in the retail strat­egy of the brand as far as the In­dian mar­ket goes, but we are open to the idea of a fran­chis­ing model over­seas.”

Retail Map­ping

With an ag­gres­sive ex­pan­sion in every metropoli­tan as well as Tier I and Tier II cities, the brand is tak­ing a great leap to­wards suc­cess. At present, the brand is present in all A-grade lo­ca­tions in best malls of Tier I and II cities, air­ports and high­streets of Delhi and Mumbai.

Elab­o­rat­ing on this, Ma­lik says, “Our av­er­age store size is about 300 sq.ft. and we have 80 EBOS in­clud­ing 15 at top In­dian air­ports along with four in­ter­na­tional out­lets.”

The bridge-to-lux­ury brand has com­pany owned com­pany op­er­ated stores in In­dia and UAE and fran­chisee op­er­ated stores in all other in­ter­na­tional ter­ri­to­ries.

Ex­pan­sion Plans

“UK (Lon­don), Sin­ga­pore, Thai­land, Bahrain, Saudi Ara­bia, Nepal and Kuwait are amongst the new coun­tries we are ex­plor­ing,” re­veals Ma­lik.

“Tran­sit retail is our fastest grow­ing seg­ment and con­trib­utes to about 30 per­cent of our over­all rev­enue. Glob­ally, we are ex­plor­ing dis­tri­bu­tion with Duty Free set­ups at Dubai, Bahrain, Thai­land and a retail touch point at Changi Air­port in Sin­ga­pore,” he adds.

As far as the In­dian mar­ket is con­cerned, the brand is look­ing for­ward to open stand­alone stores at Ae­roc­ity (Delhi), VR Malls across Chen­nai and Su­rat, Phoenix Mall at Luc­know and tran­sit retail out­lets at Hy­der­abad and Kochi air­ports.

Apart from this, the brand is also lay­ing em­pha­sis on ex­pand­ing on­line reach. Cur­rently, on­line con­trib­utes 5-6 per­cent of the over­all rev­enue.

“This fis­cal end, we are eye­ing a rev­enue of ₹3 crore and as the mar­ket is slowly mov­ing on­line, we are pay­ing a care­ful at­ten­tion to this chan­nel,” Ma­lik conl­cudes.

WE HAVE TRA­VERSED MORE THAN A QUAR­TER CEN­TURY IN­NO­VAT­ING PROD­UCTS AND MEET­ING CUS­TOMER AS­PI­RA­TIONS WITH DE­SIGNS THAT HAVE UTIL­ITY, AND PRO­VIDE ALL LEATHER AC­CES­SORY NEEDS OF A DIS­CERN­ING CLIENT. – Sahil Ma­lik, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Da Mi­lano

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