Leayan Global Private Limited, a fast growing division of RSPL incepted in 1995. The footwear range of Leayan Global Pvt. Ltd was launched under the brand name Red Chief in 1997 to meet growing demand for branded high quality leather footwear. The company is a complete leather and footwear manufacturer with its own tannery and five manufacturing plants. In an exclusive conversation with Raman Kumar Gangaramani , Vice-President Retail, Leayan Global Pvt. Ltd talks about the impact of covid 19 on footwear industry and way forward.
How do you see the Impact of COVID 19 on retail sector?
The Covid-19 has negatively impacted the retail sector. With all the retail shops and sectors being closed to ward off the crisis, sales and manufacturing have plummeted to the ground.
We hope to see a positive change now as restrictions have been eased and shops being reopened. Although not at full swing but customer footfall has started. Similarly, online business is resuming at a good pace.
Being a home-grown company how is Red Chief planning to support the campaign ‘Vocal for Local’?
Red Chief is well established as a leading home-grown leather footwear brand in India and consistently providing best of the quality, comfort, and style for over 23 years now to its wide base of loyal customers across length and breadth of the country.
Our end to end process from footwear design, procuring raw material and manufacturing using state of the art technologies, all are done within India. Our design team is well equipped with world class design studio where a team of experienced national and international designers are constantly working together on modern and technologically advanced software, to develop better and innovative designs.
Further to support local for vocal – we are also engaged with local supplier and manufacturers. We have partnered with them to fulfil our business requirements along with educating and developing them to achieve fast, cost effective and best quality output.
With the changing market scenario how B2C brands/ companies will cope with this situation?
The COVID 19 pandemic is forcing changes in the world. People are living differently, thinking differently and in many ways buying differently. Consumers are looking at products and brands through a new lens. The factors that influence brand decisions are also changing as “Buy Local “trend accelerates.
In footwear category – for the time being, retail stores will see moderate customer footfall but there would be a surge in online sales which is already evident from current situation and this is how overall business will reshuffle among offline and online.
What will be the marketing strategy that Red Chief will adopt?
We would continue delivering quality at an affordable value for money pricing. As obvious will also have attractive offers for special occasions and festivals, as need be.
As regards our branding and promotions – we will continue our major focus through digital and social media, which is already on, to increase brand salience and top of the mind recall. As COVID situation improves further – we would start resuming our ATL / BTL activities as well.
Our CRM team is working rigorously to address customer queries and guiding them to our new operating safety measures as per prescribed norms by health department. We are ensuring to communicate these advisory to our employees and customers.
Over coming few weeks - our objective is to resume business operation in full swing while maintaining the safety of the staff and customers as top priority.
What will be the distribution strategy and perception of Red Chief henceforth?
E - Commerce platform and our own Red Chief website – business has resumed and now reach of booked orders is being ensured to online customers. More than 60 % of our Exclusive Brand Stores are now opened for customers and we are in touch with local administrations to open more in couple of days ahead. As regards our distributors and retailers – they have also started opening based on permission from local authorities and in coming weeks – most will open.
Coming few weeks are crucial as we are trying all our sales channels to resume operations in full swing and provide seamless access to our loyal customers for purchasing from any of the above-mentioned channels, they prefer to.
Since lockdown in most part of country has been eased and people movement across various walks of life has started so shopping need for footwear will also revive and sales will be on the rise now onwards.