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Arvind Brands to bring global brands

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Apparel maker Arvind Brands is planning to expand its offerings by introducing more international brands this year, besides ramping up its retail presence across the country.

The company said the initiatives are part of the Rs 400 crore investment plan announced last year, out of which Rs 100 crore has already been invested.

Arvind Brands, which has licence for premium segment men’s wear brands like Arrow and Gant, will be launching ‘Izod´ from the house of global apparel firm Van Heusen.

“Last month, we launched US-based sportswear brand US Polo Association under a licensing agreement and we will be introducing Izod by the end of 2009,” Arvind Brands CEO (brands & retail) J Suresh informed.

He said the company will start with big departmental stores for both US Polo and Izod, before venturing into exclusive outlets.

“We will start opening exclusive outlets by start of 2010 and we are looking at 15-odd stores of both US Polo and Izod within a year from that, with focus on the big metros,” Suresh said, adding that the company is also looking at other international brands.

“Last year, we had announced a Rs400 crore investment for expanding our business for 2008-2012 period and these steps are part of it. We have so far spent Rs100 crore, the rest will be utilised over the next three years,” he added.

Arvind Brands is also going ahead with ramping up of its other brands, including youth-oriented Flying Machine.

“We are planning to open 20 new Flying Machine outlets this fiscal, from the existing 80,” Suresh said.

Besides, the company is also planning to open 40 more ‘Megamart´ supermarket, which sells its value segment brands like Chirokee, Excalibur and Newport. The company currently has 120 Megamarts across the country.

The company is aiming for a turnover of Rs550 crore this fiscal, a growth rate of 20% over last year’s figure.

“We had a turnover of Rs440 crore last year and our goal is to reach a figure of Rs550 crore in 2009-10 on the back of the retail expansion and launch of new international brands,” Suresh added.

Asked about the company’s recent plans for demerging its retail and brands business, he said: “We have applied for the court approval and are hopeful of securing assent by August-September.”

Arvind Brands had earlier this year announced plans for demerging the two businesses and for setting up two companies — the Arvind Lifestyle Brand Ltd and the Arvind Retail Ltd — as part of its financial restructuring policy.

Source: Live Mint

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