THE MAR­KET FOR LUX­URY GOODS AND SER­VICES HAS GROWN RAPIDLY IN ALL THE TOP METRO CITIES, MAK­ING THE CON­SUMER R SPOILT FOR CHOICE.

Apparel - - Feature -

A NICHE SEG­MENT

But de­spite this con­sumer evo­lu­tion, home-grown play­ers in the af­ford­able lux­ury space are still small fish com­pared to for­eign brands. In­dia as a re­tail mar­ket is not uni­form, es­pe­cially when it comes to pref­er­ence for lux­ury in terms of need ful­fil­ment. Few ex­ist­ing play­ers have thus been able to ful­fil the needs of the In­dian lux­ury con­sumer. Since this seg­ment of mar­ket re­mains un­touched, huge po­ten­tial lies in the same.

To be suc­cess­ful in In­dia as a re­tailer, it is nec­es­sary to gauge both the fi­nan­cial po­ten­tial as well as the mind­set of the In­dian lux­ury con­sumer. For ex­am­ple, the tra­di­tional In­dian cus­tom of per­sonal adorn­ment has led to strong de­mand for lux­ury ac­ces­sories, jew­ellery and time­pieces, and de­signer cloth­ing and footwear, thus es­tab­lish­ing in­ter­na­tional re­tail brands as a huge com­peti­tor to the do­mes­tic In­dian brands. When it comes to ‘af­ford­able lux­ury’, In­dian re­tail­ers find it com­par­a­tively more dif­fi­cult to gen­er­ate rev­enue from In­dian brands, a con­cern that the In­dian brands are tak­ing se­ri­ously and ad­dress­ing ac­cord­ingly. The mar­ket for lux­ury goods and ser­vices has grown rapidly in all the top metro cities, mak­ing the con­sumer spoilt for choice and sig­ni­fy­ing a ma­jor up­heaval for the coun­try’s re­tail sec­tor. The av­er­age of lux­ury brand own­ers is less than 40 years in In­dia. This seg­ment has so­phis­ti­cated tastes and is fast tak­ing up en­try-level lux­ury seg­ment cars to flaunt their suc­cess. With grow­ing in­ter­net ac­cess and in­creased aware­ness of lux­ury prod­ucts via so­cial me­dia, the lux­ury goods ser­vice providers are now fo­cus­ing on a com­bi­na­tion of off­line, dig­i­tal and so­cial me­dia to in­flu­ence cus­tomers. For the most part, it’s in­ter­na­tional brands such as Michael Kors, Diesel, and Charles & Keith that dom­i­nate theth af­ford­able lux­ury seg­ment in In­dia. For brand-con­scious In­dian shop­pers, these es­tab­lished global gi­ants pro­vide a way to in­vest in sta­tus sym­bols that are far more af­ford­able than the av­er­age lux­ury brand.

Since its en­try in 2013, Michael Kors has opened four stores in the coun­try and plans to launch even more. The brand is do­ing brisk busi­ness in In­dia with its colour­ful bags and ac­ces­sories, with shop­pers spend­ing a siz­able sum of around R20,000-R30,000 at a time. Mean­while, ac­ces­sories brand Kate Spade launched its first two stores in In­dia ear­lier this year, lo­cated in New Delhi.

@BESIVA

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