Liva, the viscose based fabric brand from Grasim Industries is significantly gaining its momentum in the country. The brand has tied-up with around 38 leading fashion retail brands while supplying around 18 mn tagged garments to them. Around 90 percent of the fabric is only used for making women fashion apparels and the rest 10 percent is used for men’s apparel and home textile. Hence in the next couple of years the brand is planning to launch men’s and home textile specific fabric brand. Thus, talking about Liva brand’s future strategies Rajeev Gopal, Chief Marketing Officer, Pulp and Fiber Business, Aditya Birla Group spoke to Indianretailer.com on the sidelines of Liva Protégé 2017 in Mumbai.
While Liva has been significantly gaining momentum in the fashion apparel segment YOY what could be your strategy forward?
Liva is an ingredient brand with which we intent to ensure that the consumers get Liva fabric in most of their garment choices. Therefore we will continue to work with our partners who are very important for us. We will do co-promotion, co-marketing and co-branding for them. Presently we are not thinking of launching our own exclusive garment brand.
Which are the leading brands in the country that you have tied-up with?
We have tied-up with almost 38 leading brands, including retail women fashion apparels from BIBA to Pantaloon.
Out of all the fabric brands that you have how much has Liva contributed to your growth?
Liva is becoming quite big now. It is growing by almost 100 percent every season. We had started with only about 5 lakh garments which were tagged and today we are talking about 18 mn garments being tagged every year and in the next season it will be about 25 mn garments. That’s a big growth in three years.
Over the years how has the brand been gaining acceptance in the Indian and overseas market?
The brand response in India is very good. Consumers are now beginning to understand that this fabric provides them with fashion and comfort that they require. It is unique with its properties of fluidity, softness and smoothness, hence more and more leading fashion brands are using this fabric which is now giving consumers greater confidence which is good and they are asking more of it. Also we have started directly communicating on the television about the brand Liva which itself gives the consumers a greater visibility of this brand.
The brand is still at the upper premium price range. Will it come down to mid-premium bracket?
We have started with mid-premium range with some smaller brands like Prism and Go Colors which makes leggings some of the categories. We are focused on fashion categories which bring brands to this kind of fabric. In women’s wear we are looking to tap the segments like Kurti, leggings, tops or innerwear because these categories are more amenable to use this kind of fabric. We will also branch out in men’s and home textile at some stage while covering full range of garments.
Why is the brand more women fashion garments centric?
Liva fabric can also be used for men’s apparel home textile. Around 90 percent of the fabric is only used for making women fashion apparels and the rest 10 percent is used for men’s apparel and home textile. The viscose fiber is the main ingredient in the Liva fabric which is versatile with its properties and is suitable for all women fashion garments. We will launch this brand across all the categories. Hopefully we are planning to launch men’s and home textile specific fabric brand in the next couple of years.
How is been the overseas demand?
Overseas demand is growing but I think India is becoming more of a preferred supplier for viscose based garments. That has happened because we have worked with our partners and improved their capabilities. Now the quality of fabric that we produce is much better than what it was earlier. Therefore, global brands are now looking at India as preferred sourcing destination.
Please throw light on viscose garments export figures?
Exports have grown phenomenally for viscose based garments from India. We have not branded Liva as yet because we have not promoted it globally, but at some stage we will do that also because, we are a global company. Indian viscose based garments export has grown about 30 percent CAGR in the last three years. We are still very small as far as the destination for viscose based garments is concerned which is primarily from China and Bangladesh.
After Liva what innovation can we see from Grasim Industries?
We are looking at Modal fiber which is the next generation fiber which is Liva Crème like. We are looking at some innovations in fiber itself by making it more value added, adding some functionality to fiber. We are looking at dope dive fiber which is extremely an environment friendly product.