Textile and apparel major, Arvind, is now going to focus more on the women’s wear market. To start with, the company has launched the Arrow range of women’s wear and will soon introduce the same under its licensed international bra-nds US Polo and Izod.
J Suresh, chief executive officer of Arvind (brands & retail) division, said, “We will be adopting a more aggressive approach towards wo-men’s wear now. But at the same time, we are treading the path cautiously. We have no plans of offering women’s wear under the Arrow brand in all the exclusive brand outlets.” According to Suresh unlike other brands Arrow women’s wear range will work in the market because the brand offers formal wear with an element of fashion. The range offering formal wear, party dresses, casual line and sportswear is priced between Rs 700-Rs 1,200.
Beyond Arrow, the company also has plans of extending its recently launched international licensee brand, US Polo to women’s wear in the near future. Similarly, Arvind is launching Izod another international sports wear brand in January. “Izod too could be extended to women’s wear eventually. Also, Cherokee will see an increased focus on women’s wear with a larger offering,” said Suresh. Cherokee is the international value brand retailed in Arvind-owned Mega Mart outlets.
Arrow now operates 65 outlets across India but the women’s wear range is available only in top 20 outlets of Arrow. He added, “We are here to stay. We are starting out with an apparel line for women under Arrow and then will eventually get into accessories.”
According to retail consulting firm Technopak Advisors, the branded Western wear market for women in India is about Rs 4,500 crore out of the total market estimated at Rs 52,000 crore. At present, the dominant Western women’s wear brands in India targeting working professionals are Van Huesuen, Park Avenue, Provogue, Allen Solly, Scullers, Mango, Esprit and Color Plus, among others. Ashish Dhir, associate vice-president at Technopak Advisors, said, “Considering that women will account for 30 per cent of the 40-50 million jobs that are expected to be created particularly in the service sector over the next two-three years, the women’s wear market will see good growth.”
Arvind also retails Excalibur, Flying Machine, Ruf & Tuf and Newport University. For financial year 2009, the retail and brands division of Arvind clocked revenues of Rs 450 crore, while the company reported revenues of about Rs 2,400 crore.
Source: Financial Chronicle