How manufactures are leveraging brand licensing to establish retail identity?

In an exclusive conversation with Animesh Maheshwari, Vice President Retail at Suditi Industries Limited sheds light on its brand licensing strategy.
Animesh Maheshwari

Suditi Industries limited(“SIL”), was incorporated in 1991 as a processing house to manufacture 100% cotton Knitted Fabrics and Polar Fleece Fabrics. Ina short span, the company established itself as a reputed quality manufacturer of hosiery fabrics and garments for many established brands. The company is today a vertically integrated Textile and Apparel manufacturing house with processes like knitting, dyeing, printing, finishing, garmenting and also retailing of its own branded apparels and reputed licensed wear range.

Talk to us about your stint with brand licensing.

Brand licensing for us started with us Apparel licensee for 2014 Fifa world cup Brazil one of the biggest sporting event in the world.

What made you think about licensing as an effective retail strategy? 

Licensing works as an effective strategy for us as there is Recognizable IP which if far more easier to market and sell compared to starting something from the inception stage which will require lot of marketing input and efforts with no guarantee of success whereas probability of succeeding with a god IP is far more higher.

 What were the challenges that you faced while coming up with licensed product range for various brands? How did you address those challenges?

Most important challenge what one faces while creating a licensed product range is essentially during first few rounds of production where it is very important for the licensee is to understand product guidelines thoroughly as globally recognized brands have a detailed guidelines of lot off Do’s and Dont’s for designing which needs to be adhered to, once you get a hang of it things becomes quite easy. Also as we have a good amount of Liensed sports franchisee one more challenge here is to use the club logo or crest in many different ways to keep the product range exciting

What are the point of sale and price points?

Our sports licensed product is sold at leading retailers like Lifestyle, Shoppers Stop, Brandfactory and online player like Myntra, Jabong and Amazon, we have agood amount of presence with regional large retailers also.

Price Points are typically in the range of 699-999 on tshirts which is bulk of our business

How much of the total revenue is driven by licensed merchandise? 

 At present about 35-40% of our retail revenue is coming from licensed merchandise.

What product categories and price points have perform well for your brand?

 Value price points definitely works very well for us and categories like tshirts, jogger and sweatshirts do quite well for us

According to you why should a retailer or manufacturer step into licensing? 

Licensing for retailers can act as a marketing tool to add recognizable brands to their product offering and too a manufacturer it can be a medium to venture in to retail improving his margins and getting a foothold and also can be channel for him to test waters before venturing in the market with his own brand.

Elaborate about the deal for FC Barcelona and Manchester City FC and your strategy to market the licensed range. Also how do you think sports licensing is gaining foothold in the country? Also have you inked any new licensing deal in recent past?

FC Barcelona and Manchester city are one of the leading football clubs in the world with a great legacy and have few of the best athlete representing the club. India as a country is embracing sports and fitness and with new generation kids playing sports like football and basketball more than ever, with this we see a huge demand among the young kids in the country and that is the reason kids business for the same is larger than men’s currently.


Animesh Maheshwari