Within a short stint, establishing an enviable reputation and high visibility in the fashion world, Kazo has gained huge acceptance in the Indian market. Kazo, apart from having design studios in Spain, London, Paris and Milan has recently set up a magnanimous design studio in Delhi. In a candid conversation, Deepak Aggarwal, Creative Director, Kazo talks about the journey of the brand.
Neha Malhotra (NM): Can you brief us about the inception and growth of Kazo?
Deepak Aggarwal (DA): Kazo is a young brand and launched its first showroom in India in July 2007. We initially started with only two stores of line and gradually opened 16 stores which are company owned outlets and 19 shop and shops. We have seen 25 to 35 per cent growth in the financial year even at the time of recession. We have been very eminent and visible and our stores and brand name has grown over the years in terms of our brand presence and market acceptance.
NM: You are among the pioneers of women’s western wear. How did you decide to venture into this segment?
DA: We have vast exposure and experience with women’s wear. I have been in this trade for the last 15 to 16 years and acclaimed internationally in the fashion arena. With the flair and passion for women apparel, there could not be any other option better than this one.
NM: Which are the preferred locations for the opening of Kazo stores?
DA: Since we are a high-end brand we mainly choose high street markets due to the easy availability of our target clientele who are the cream of the city. We have stores in the leading markets of Delhi, Mumbai and now that we have our presence in Amritsar and Ludhiana to cover the Punjab region. The location of the store is always where our target clientele can reach us easily, though our main focus is in metropolitan cities.
NM: Does Kazo manufacture or source its products? If you manufacture them, what kind of facilities have you set up for the same?
DA: Our range is a bag of assortments. There is a lot of merchandise that is designed and manufactured by us however; we do cater to products which are not directly manufactured in house.
NM: What is the procedure for the designing the clothes? Which trends do the designers follow? What are the ranges available for customers?
DA: The procedure is not very complicated; we have a dedicated team of designers in Europe who are vigilant of the latest fashion trends. The designer team studies end number of catalogues from around the world, creates themes for the season and then design their own masterpieces. Thereafter different teams, be it manufacturing or merchandising, work together to give the collection its form.
We have clothes and accessories like belts, bags, charms, scarves, hats, etc. We also have categories based on looks, for instance, we had the bikini range. Our collection includes everything of what a fashion brand would house for its women clients.
NM: Has the coming of many international labels in the women’s western wear segment posed any threat to your business? If yes, how have you worked to tackle this competition?
DA: The market is filled with competition, and it is good to have them as competitors since we never get satisfied with our success. We work hard to outshine our fellow competitors. We ensure that each client comes back to the store more then once.
NM: Kazo is now available for men as well. What was the reason behind the diversification and how has the response been?
DA: Initially we diversified since we wanted the brand name to grow more, and introducing men’s collection was the best that could happen. Now, we are not simply tagged as an ‘all women’s store’ but a store that carries elite clothing for both, men and women.