Fashion has really evolved with time, so has style and taste of Indian consumers. No compromise on style and quality is the new mantra that is attracting youngsters throughout the country. Ishaan Sachdeva, Director of Alberto Torresi, said that Indian footwear market has a long way to go and has great potential, in an interview with Indian Retailer.
What is the Indian market attitude towards luxury footwear?
These days the younger generation are fashion conscious and always wish to stay aligned with the latest fashion trends. Shoes have become a necessary style statement and customers tend to give more preference to style and appearance of the footwear rather than comfort factor. Customers these days look for latest trending styles without compromising the quality be it formal or casual footwear. An inclination towards more branded stuff has also been observed in the recent past. However the average price point preferred by the Indian consumer is still between Rs. 1000 – 5000 irrespective of the brand.
What segment of the market does your company comprise of?
The brand deals in leather footwear segment ranging from formal, casual to semi casual range. These categories include variety of styles like boots, formal lace ups, loafers and slip-ons.
What is the USP of your brand?
We at Alberto Torresi have always had a strategy of adapting to the latest trends and delivering the product according to the consumer’s tastes. This is what has been the core of the brand since many years. Offering styles which are not easily available on other platforms, like the fishermen shoes, has always been our philosophy and the reason behind our growth. Also, the introduction of strong technical backup like stress-less technology, impact system and memory technology into our products has been our USP.
Tell us about your online and offline presence. How many stores do you have currently and where?
We are available on our own e-commerce platform and also on renowned e-commerce shopping platforms like myntra, jabong etc. E-commerce also gives us an opportunity to connect with our customers directly. Recently, we have also re-launched our website and through that we keep getting feedbacks about their choices and experiences which further help us to evolve. We also have nearly about 700 MBOs across the country.
How are Indian footwear brands doing in the market in terms of growth?
Indian shoe market in the long run has a huge scope. Today customers are fashion conscious and are aware of latest fashion trends further giving huge impetus to the retailers. The Indian shoe market has seen a lot of development. India as a market is evolving and people are more open to new things. A few decades back, only a few types of style were worn by everyone irrespective of age and class. But now we see a lot of new variety entering into the market. Customers now like to experiment a lot and this idea of experimentation gives many opportunities of growth. A lot of western influence has also been observed in the footwear sector.Oxfords taken from Europe and broguesfrom Ireland are gaining wide popularity at workplaces. Thus, with the availability of varied styles both in formal and casual range the footwear brands and footwear sector as a whole are witnessing huge growth with each passing year.
How does Alberto Torressi as a brand complement the price variation in the industry?
The main essence of the brand is to offer a lot of variety in terms of styles, designs and colors. So our strategy is to add more and more width. Another strategy is aggressively priced range which is done to ensure our presence in different parts of the country as well as online. We aim to provide huge variety to our customers at an affordable price. For instance, the price bracket of our casual collection comprising of sneakers, slip-ons, loafers and boots is usually between Rs. 1,399 to 4,000 whereas the price point of our lace up collection starts from Rs. 1,500 which goes up to Rs. 4,500. We also launched our exclusive collection for our customers which starts from Rs. 10,000 on-wards.
How have you contributed in the growth of footwear retail in India?
Since the inception of our brand we have reiterated the need to focus on customers, provide them good value and improve customer satisfaction. Innovation has always ruled our collections. As mentioned earlier, we have introduced a strong technical backup into our products. Apart from this we have done a sweet hybrid of Italian and Indian footwear. Inspired by the Italian designs we have an entire range of classical footwear which have been modified according to the Indian preferences.Loafers which are one of the most versatile shoe styles have also been doing well since the inception of our brand. We have been lucky to come out with this category of shoes at the right time, right slot and right range. From that time it has not looked back as we continue to strive in it and improve it. Other varieties offered by us like boots, high-tops, slip-ons and lace ups have also contributed to the growth of footwear sector.
What’s your take on franchising as a model of expansion?
We are working on the same and by the next season, i.e. SS18 we will definitely have our franchise store.
Do you have franchise outlets in India? If yes, how many? And what are your plans to expand through this model?
Currently we do not have any franchise outlets but we are soon planning to come up with our franchise store.