“Last year, we signed a new brand New Balance. We are going really aggressive with that and we think that the brand is going to be very large. We will use the power of retail with e-commerce and distribution and make it the fastest growing brand as compared to the other brands under the umbrella of Major Brands,” said President, Major Brands, Tushar Ved.
New Balance entered into a distribution agreement with Mumbai-based The Major Brands Group last year for retailing of New Balance products in India.
“We are opening our exclusive stores for New Balance and also looking forward to open franchisee stores. Initially, we will be opening stores at Delhi, Bengaluru and Mumbai. This year, we will see at least new 20 stores of New Balance. We do not look at the past performance of the brand, we look at the future performance of the brand,” he further added.
Major Brands that exists in three categories – fashion, footwear and accessories – experienced 10-11 per cent like-to-like growth last fiscal. And now, it is planning to ramp up its Omnichannel strategy.
“We have started working with Amazon, Myntra, Jabong and soon we will start working with Paytm. We believe that we have to be available where ever our customer is and our customer wants to see us as long as we are not compromising the brand equity and maintaining the brand standards. This year, we are planning to open shop-in-shops. So, we will be available on e-commerce, EBOs and shop-in-shops,” revealed Ved.
Major Brands has no plans to open EBOs in Tier II and Tier III cities. Instead the brand plans to open shop-in-shops there and cater to the customers through e-commerce.
“We do not believe that the Indian Tier III market is ready for us. However, we have a presence in Tier II, but we will open more stores there only if they perform well. Otherwise, in both Tier II and Tier III, we will be present through shop-in-shops and e-commerce,” said Ved.
While questioned about closing of Bebe stores across US and Europe, Ved said, “I don’t think that Bebe is closing down all the stores. The brand might close a few stores in US and Europe. However, in India there is no plan to scale down the operations.”