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The Indian fashion retail industry needs to be more consumer centric: J Suresh

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“India’s apparel fashion business has a long way to go with per capita consumption being as low as $50 compared to $950 in the US and $150 in China, said Suresh J, Chairman, India Fashion Forum and MD & CEO, Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd.

“However, fashion turnaround time in India has now picked up in terms of number of days unlike in the past, indicating faster changes in fashion trends,” he said, speaking at the inaugural session of the two-day India Fashion Forum 2018, held in Mumbai on 13-14 March 2018.

He seemed unhappy with the fact that the Indian fashion retail industry is very inward looking. He was of the opinion that the industry needed to become more consumer centric.

Inaugurating the two-day Fashion Retail conclave, Michael Yacobian, CEO Top-Line Solutions stated at the Master Class he held that the next retail rush will be achieved by increasing visiting minutes of the consumer both physically and digitally.

The E-Commerce Wave

On Day 1 of IFF 2018, Ananth Narayanan, CEO, Myntra & Jabong talked about the rising penetration of online shopping through mobile phones in the inaugural session.

“We are in the midst of an exponential growth with e-commerce likely to constitute $30-35 billion of the fashion retail industry pie over the next five years,” Narayanan said.

According to consumer behavior research by Google on Online Fashion, Internet users in India are expected to grow 1.5 times from a third of the population at 43 crore to almost half of the population at 60 crore by 2020. Within this user base, e-commerce transactions will be worth US $40-45 billion by 2020 and will be driven by shoppers above the age of 35 with more women shoppers and people from smaller towns.

While e-commerce users could increase from the current 80-90 million in 2017 to 180-200 million by 2020, smaller cities will comprise more than 50 percent of the online shopper base by 2020.

According to the first edition of the Myntra Fashion Report released by the e-commerce major at the India Fashion Forum 2018, by the year 2020 India will have over 700 million Internet accessing population, with almost half of it engaged in online transactions.

The report also endorsed a new trend – that the online consumer profile is now older, with a heavy focus on rural areas, women folk and people using vernacular languages.

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