SSIPL is one of the leading specialty retailers of premium international sports and lifestyle brands in India with a presence across retailing, designing, manufacturing, and franchising of sports and lifestyle products. Its vision is to achieve and sustain the pioneer position as a “Brand Hub”.
With over two decades of existence, SSIPL is today seen as a market leader and a trendsetter in the world of fashion and lifestyle retail in the country. Back in the 90’s when retail in our country was largely segmented and unorganised, SSIPL decided to introduce and launch Nike – one of the most aspirational fashion and fitness oriented brands across the globe.
Founded in 1994 as Moja Shoes Pvt. Ltd., SSIPL grew extensively to become ‘The Brand Hub’ that it is today. The year after it was founded, the company had set up its very first footwear manufacturing unit located in Kundli, Haryana and went on to introduce the global sportswear giant, Nike to the Indian market as their exclusive licensee in the country. In 1998, SSIPL forayed into the organised retail segment with its first Nike only store in Delhi’s posh South Extension market. Following this, the company has tied up with global brands like Levis,Puma, Benetton, Lotto, Smiley and Clarks and has also increased its number of production units to six.
The retail network of the group is spread across 92 cities with 440 stores as of today. Rishab Soni is the man behind SSIPL and is a known face amongst the retail fraternity of the country. Ahead of time, in 1998, he had a dream of making retail a huge and an organised business in the country, and it is his vision that has landed SSIPL as one of the most premium and premier retail companies in India, today. Fourty one
years old, Soni, Managing Director, SSIPL Retail Limited, holds a diploma in footwear designing from the Ars Sutoria institute of design in Italy.
In order to give back to society, Soni set up the SSIPL foundation in 2012. He takes a very keen interest in the functioning of the foundation which has provided care to cancer affected patients, sponsored the surgeries of differently abled children and heart patients, funded NGO’s, supported school children by providing them with
athletic and school footwear, and has donated a lot of merchandise to the needy. Soni has been instrumental in instilling the culture that “we rise together as one” at SSIPL and that has been one of the most prominent factors behind his success.
SSIPL, today is a premium specialty retailer in the arena of fashion and lifestyle, offering the pinnacle assortment of products and services with best-in-class infrastructure and backend operational parameters. One of the leading reasons for the company’s growth and success has been its ability to capture the most premium retail locations, both in the high-street markets and malls nationwide. It has also made the right moves when it comes to selection of brands that it has partnered with and most importantly hiring, grooming, retaining its human capital and providing them with enough career progression opportunities within the organisation. With over 2,500+ passionate and committed workforce at the frontend acting as the brand ambassadors of the organisation, it
undertakes every possible measure to ensure a delightful consumer experience across 440 retail touch points that it operates in 92 cities across India. Adds Soni, “The scale of our operations can be judged from 1.2 million cash memos made annually under the SSIPL umbrella from our points of sales covering almost half a million square feet of retail space.”
The group has invested equally in its backend operations, which is the backbone of its business. “We are the first company to have successfully migrated and implemented Axapta 2012 (the pinnacle ERP solution offering from Microsoft designed for the retail industry),” said Soni. “Microsoft has used SSIPL as a case study to showcase to their global audience of enterprise business.
Information Technology leads the way within our organisation by acting as an enabler of the business and not just a support function. We are compared to the best IT infrastructure within the industry, nationwide. Having introduced a tablet-shopping module in our Nike stores last year, we aim to become the largest omni-channel retailer in the country offering our customers an enriched and global shopping experience at our Brick & Mortar stores,” he added.
Brands & Products
Over the years, SSIPL has brought leading international fashion and lifestyle brands closer to the Indian consumer and made them more accessible to a larger audience across the length and breath of the country by opening stores even in the smaller cities, providing a standard retail environment and elevated shopping experience.
Today, the group operates 389 standalone stores for leading international brands such as Nike, Levis, Lotto, United Colors of Benetton and Clarks. All these brands are market leaders in their respective segments and are truly aspirational in the fashion and lifestyle segment from a consumer’s lens globally. The group also operates multi-brand footwear boutique stores under the banner ‘Shoe Tree’, which aims at providing fashion oriented
lifestyle products to a premium consumer audience. Shoe Tree is a destination for the young and urban consumer looking for a wide range of international footwear brands and fashion inspired product offerings under one roof. Most recently, SSIPL has launched their homegrown brand ‘Mmojah’, which is positioned as an Indian aunthentic sportswear brand offering a complete wardrobe to a consumer across footwear, apparel and accessories. SSIPL’s two decade plus experience across design, product development, manufacturing quality, understanding of consumer preferences and market penetration across the country has helped it to create a product line which is an exciting value proposition. Mmojah offers both general as well as technical sportswear products.
SSIPL has been able to successfully position itself as a premium footwear destination for both men and women and is also considered a leader in this space by its brand partners.
As on date, SSIPL operates six manufacturing facilities across the states of Delhi, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh with a total capacity of 5 million pairs per annum. The units are backed up with technically equipped, research oriented and statutory compliant set-ups in the country. The company facilities are compliant with 6 Sigma and TQM and are also equipped with dedicated design and development centres for each line of business. SSIPL is the largest footwear manufacturer for Nike, Puma and Lotto in the country.
Training & Development
The group also has an extremely passionate and forward-looking training and development wing. “We have introduced a new vertical within T&D last year – The Retail Induction School. This five-day residential training program is aimed at giving our new colleagues a very detailed and exhaustive on-board training and induction by familiarising them with the organisation and respective brand ethos, apart from soft skill development. We run various other training programs for both front-end and backend teams which act as a refresher and also helps in specific training needs of our fellow SSIPLians. We also have a robust career progression program within the organisation called Aspire, which has helped a very large part of our human capital to meet their aspirations of growth and development. This has not only helped us in maintaining the lowest attrition levels in the industry but also in creating leaders who are successfully managing different portfolios within the company,” said Soni.
Apart from the above, various other initiatives undertaken by SSIPL to stay ahead of the curve include mobile cash desk or billing station, creation of gym facilities and tie-ups with gyms for their frontend employees and encouraging them to use the same within work hours, participation in various running and sports events including Delhi Marathon, Mumbai Marathon, Pinkathon, etc. The group has also created retail infrastructure at par with the current global formats of brands like Nike and Levi’s giving the consumers a standard experience of shopping at these international outfits.
SSIPL intends to strengthen its relationships with its partner brands and will also focus on the growth of Mmojah. The group which has added 160 stores in the last two years alone will continue to scale up its retail doors in the near future, epitomising itself as “The Brand Hub”.