Inner secrets of bustling business

The boom in the organised lingerie industry is due to the change in the fashion style and statement of the Indian women coupled with their growing wealth. The organised lingerie retail format, mostly dominated by international brands is inducing enhanced
Changing fashion statements

The retailing sector of India is showing a rapid metamorphosis when coming to retail women’s intimate wear, which is evident from the entry of large international brands in the market in the last few years. In addition, higher disposable income levels of Indians and their varying lifestyles have made lingerie from just an undergarment to a fashionable necessity, at least in the urban sectors. With the emergence of modern retail format in terms of merchandising and consumer experience are stimulating more product awareness thereby making the buyers aspirational.  

The gap is filled by international brands 
A plethora of foreign brands that forayed in the Indian markets brought in the new designs and comfort through their larger number of available sizes and styles. It in a way lifted the idea of innerwear as basic requirement to a style statement. Sensing the void the foreign brands started to infiltrate the market, which was estimated at Rs 2,000 crore, quite aggressively. The brands like Enamor, Triumph and Future Group promoted Etam, Undercolor from Benetton India, Calvin Klein, Rosy, Lisa Carmel, Lejaby, Victoria’s Secret and Aubade have brought in the product awareness among the buyers who are gradually daring to be more experimental in their preferences.  

Infusing product awareness 
Training and infusing product awareness is another value proposition that lingerie brands are offering. Soon-to-be-launched European women’s innerwear brand Change recognises the brand’s USP as the magnanimous number of SKU (80 sizes for every style) and shopping guidance by the salesperson to pick up the right product, informs Claus Walther Jensen, Managing Director of Change. 

Revised pricing 
The organised lingerie retail market is primarily dominated by the international brands who are consciously reviewing their pricing strategy to conform to the Indian market standards. Levi’s India is going to launch its women’s innerwear line in the country soon. The product line will be premium, revealed Shumone Chatterjee, MD of Levi’s Strauss India and the company is still working on it. Swiss brand Triumph International which is going to bring in ‘Legacy’ branded lingerie in India through its subsidiary keeping the price at over Rs 300 a piece in middle range. Though upper-middle class Indian women are now ready to experience luxury, here the market sentiment is dominated by value-for-money, so the volume selling rather than high price is the concern for the retailers in contrast to the European and US markets where the price range of the same product line may start from Rs 1,000 and can go up to Rs 40,000.  

More to come 
The potential of the emerging market also beckons the Indian organised retailers to venture in the segment. The leading fashion retail brand Koutons has recently announced their plan to launch innerwear brand. The French brand Banana Moon is soon going to set stores in the country through franchise route. The show is on and coming days will see more activities on this front.  

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