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UFO: Creating a Domestic Brand

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Incepted by the Greative Group, UFO (Under Fourteen Only), has marked a niche for itself in the domestic market. , MD, Creative Wear speaks on the brand’s unique proposition.

Providing the latest in fashion trends for kids under the 14 year age range, has been manufacturing clothing for the last 4 decades. According to Abhishek Agarwal, MD, , “UFO is ’s official entry in the kidswear market of India. The group has already launched brands like Portico in home furnishing and 109F and Fusion Beats in the women’s category.”

UFO offers international quality causalwear at affordable prices for the Indian market. Meeting the demands of today’s discerning children, who are well aware of fashion in terms of style and design, UFO has its own set of in-house designing team, which creates trends and innovations following the latest in fashion from across the globe.

Production & Retail Format

UFO currently has a total count of 5 EBOs in the country. The brand has also expanded its presence in large format stores, and is available through the online channel and  distribution networks across India. All products at UFO are manufactured at the company’s in-house complaint factory, which is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery of international standards and standard operating procedures (SOPs), which is also known for its strength in integrations right from the fabric to the finished end product.

Agarwal stresses that the brand uses mostly 100 percent cotton, which is sourced from their own mill at Daman and other well-known mills in the country. He adds, “Since we are sourcing huge business with most of the mills, we can leverage our relationships for sourcing for UFO. This allows us to provide great fabric at highly competitive prices.”

Challenges

As any fashion kidswear brand in India, UFO faces stiff competition from the unorganised sector. Considering the range of exposure kids today have with regard to fashion and styling, Agarwal noticed that these days kids have become choosy about their clothing; hence, getting the right mix and at the right price plays a critical role in the success of such a category.

Explains Agarwal, “Although this category has tremendous scope for growth, the space allotted to this segment is too less and all organised players are fighting for that little space in retail for sales. Also, the future generation makes their own decisions and to understand a child’s preferences in dressing and style is a whole subject in itself. In spite of these challenges, we still feel these are some exciting times ahead for this category.”

Trends

Woven shirts and denims as well as nondenims continue to dominate the sales list. In terms of volumes, the contribution of t-shirts remains unprecedented. In the girls segment, dresses as well as woven tops have contributed the highest in terms of sales.

Marketing Strategies

The Creative Group plans to market UFO through multiple channels, such as social media, blogging sites specific to children and mothers, press direct mailers, radio and other multimedia channels.

Future Plans

Agarwal is optimistic about expanding the store count to 10 outlets and is also open for franchise options. He says, “We work on a model of around 600 sq.ft. stores. Our best performing store is at St. Marks Road in Bengaluru. Being located at the Central Business District in Bengaluru, we have the advantage of being in a prime location surrounded by three schools and a premium residential area. It is our flagship store and is spread around 1,000 sq.ft.”.