Kindly shed light on the journey of Indya. How did the brand started and journey so far?
Indya was launched in 2016 as a brand that modernizes the ethnic wear industry. We realized that a lot of women in the age group of 25 to 40 today do not want to wear traditional ethnic wear that has been the same for generations. Women with a moderately western lifestyle are looking for something which is modern, trendy and in line with what’s happening overall from a global fashion point of view. Hence, we wanted to start a brand which has a perfect mix of Indian traditions combined with global fashion influences. The brand is positioned as a fusion wear brand led by the occasion wear segment. About 80% of our business comes from the occasion and evening wear category and about 20% comes from the day wear segment.
Kindly present your views on current fashion and lifestyle market in India. According to you, whatare the factors propelling growth in this segment?
There are 3 key things happening in the market right now:
Firstly, we’re seeing that the consumption of apparel and accessories by women in this country is growing significantly. India is the only country in the world where the market size of women’s apparel is lower than men’s apparel but that trend is changing now. As more women join the workforce, they have more freedom, independence and disposable income to be able to spend on what they have considered luxury so far.
Secondly, the overall demographics of this country are becoming more favourable as the young population today consists of more than 50% of the overall population. Any country would see a lot of growth in the fashion and lifestyle space when a large chunk of the population is in the age group of 20 to 40. Today’s youth with nuclear families and double income households, have a much higher disposable income than the previous generation. So with favourable demographics there’s a lot of potential for growth in the lifestyle sector.
Thirdly, fashion consumption per person has been fairly low in India since repeat buying was not frequent. 10 years back, women would go and shop only twice a year, essentially during EOSS. Today we see women shopping six to seven times a year on an average. When that change happens on a mass level, we’ll see the depth of the market and repeatability increasesubstantially for brands and they will have a much larger, loyal customer base.
Kindly shed light on the current distribution of Indya. Going forward, what are the plans to scaleup the distribution?
Indya is an omni-channel brand with a healthy mix of online and offline distribution. About 50% of our business comes from the online segment where we sell direct to customer through our website https://www.houseofindya.com/. On our website, we get a lot of business from outside India, from places such as US and Canada where there is a heavy concentration of NRIs. We also have a tie-up with marketplaces such as Myntra and Flipkart.
In terms of the offline market, we have 16 brand-owned stores which were started in the last 12 months. These EBOs are PAN India so today we have presence in Delhi, Bombay, Bangalore, Pune, Ludhiana and many more cities and the idea is to take this up to about 40 stores till the end of this year. We’re also present in large format stores like Central, Globus, Ethnicity and we’ve recently launched in Lifestyle.
Who do you see as your biggest competition?
We compete with ethnic wear brands like Global Desi and W, both of which cater to the slightly younger target market. Also, we face competition from the unorganized market which mainly consists of neighbourhood boutiques and small single store brands.
What are the major challenges in your retail category?
The biggest challenge in retail today is remaining relevant to the customer. A lot of brands have entered the ethnic wear category and have created products for a specific region or segment of the society. To be a national brand in the ethnic sector is extremely challenging because the product and design preferences in different parts of the country are different. All the regions of the country work differently in terms of how people dress and the price points that they are comfortable with. Hence building a PAN India brand is probably one of the biggest challenges for any brand in the ethnic wear market in the country.
Kindly shed light on your best performing categories and best selling price points? Going forward, what are the plans for category expansion?
Indya leads with occasion wear and hence for us the highest selling categories are crop tops& skirts which is the modern version of a lehanga. We do a lot of fusion wear so everything in our collection is mix and match - you’ll see us pairing the same crop top with a dhoti pant and also a skirt. So customers can make various combinations with just one product. Our average price point is around INR 2300-2400. In terms of category expansion, we are looking at supplementing our tunics, skirts, crop tops and bottoms with categories like accessories, dupattas and stoles.