In an exclusive conversation with Surya Suri, Founder, Steele Collection sheds light on the growth strategy of the brand.
Steele is yet another name which has cropped up in men’s fashion space. Started by Surya Suri (who is also the Director of Chunmun Stores), Steele was conceptualized in 2017 with an aim to create an electric atmosphere where Indian men’s fashion would rise beyond the said constraints and come at par with the global fashion trends. The company offers an existing range of formal & casual wear for men which comprises of shirts, trousers, jeans, shorts, t-shirts and suits. To bring exclusivity in its collection the brand believes in taking right measurements and also to divert the mind of the customers from other brands to Steele collection.
The brand has started its footprint from Northern India with overall footprint of 28 crore. The company plans to open its standalone stores in Chandigarh, Amritsar, Ludhiana followed by Hyderabad and Bengaluru in near future. The brand will enhance its reach by self systemized e-commerce module along with other retail and franchise model in the coming years.
The beginning Challenges
As Surya shared although the entrepreneurial journey has been quite stressful and challenging, yet patience, perseverance, virtue, and vision has helped us to grow at the rate of 35 percent annually. “As a high-end luxury men’s fashion, we have to invest a lot of time in research work, right from the sourcing of raw material to the selection of matching button, every minute detailing is a big challenge for us as a new brand in the market. Our commitment to excellence paved our path to success,” he said.
Surya believes that the potential of men’s fashion is still not explored yet. Fashion is quintessential yet ever-changing, thus one must be in sync with time to stay trendy and fashionable. “The demand for the latest fashion clothing has to create a boom in the retail industry and motivated us to enter the market,” shared.
Indian fashion retail has marked a significant growth in the past decade but it has its own set of problems. Economy, infrastructure, market organization and global exposure have continually been compromised, which eventually led to create hurdles in the path of retail industry growth. Even the road connectivity across the country isn’t in a good frame and that indirectly affects the market too. India needs a lot of improvements in the domestic and international market policy as well.
“The advent of e-commerce on the PPP (Public Private Partnership) model and inclusive efforts of government for technology development have though helped in the progress of the fashion retail industry. The internet penetration has almost reached 70% of the population in the country, still with a lot more scope of growth,” informed Surya.
The retail entrepreneurs need to utilize technology to its fullest to grow the sector along with fighting cyber threats. The most important influencing factor for the retail fashion industry is the consumer. Excellent customer service and customer satisfaction is the prime focus for the market players. Today, brand diversion is also a crucial factor, as consumer is the real king and that determines the success of a retail business. Indian shoppers are increasingly getting aware of fashion trends and latest styles, which is making the competition tougher for designers and entrepreneurs.
If you are looking to start fashion label..
After the completion of an year with an investment of 3.50 crores, with Steele the company clocks over 5 crore annually in revenues with a growth rate of 35 percent catering to the North India customer base through its retail outlets in Delhi NCR & Northern India.
As per Surya if somebody is looking to start similar business ethics, ethos and professionalism holds the highest values in entrepreneurship. Today, entrepreneurs must have deep insight of the market along with the expert sales skills and marketing strategies.
“Retailers are advised to leverage digital platforms to increase their business outreach and focus more customers in tier-2 and tier-3 cities. As of now, the retail fashion market is really unorganized and it really needs to be organized in a better way to grow and flourish. Creating lucrative offers for the target audience is also necessary. Last but not the least; product quality should be kept at highest priority for complete customer satisfaction,” said Surya.