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Growth Story: Indian western wear market

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Indian Textile and Apparel industry shares 5 percent in the global T&A trade and is the second-largest manufacturer and exporter in the world after China. T&A sector contributes 7 percent of industry output in value terms and 2 percent to the country’s GDP. The sector is one of the largest sources of employment in the country and provides direct employment to over 45 million people.

Growth Story: Indian western wear market

The sector stands for 12.4 percent of total exports in 2017-18, EU-28 and USA being the major T&A export destinations for the country have a total weightage of 47 percent of total T&A export.

Indian T&A market was estimated to be US $111 billion in 2018; the domestic market is a major contributor to the sector with a contribution of 66 percent. In 2018, total T&A exports of India were estimated to be US $37 billion and Apparel contributed 47 percent the figure.

Indian Domestic Apparel Market is estimated to be US $54 billion in 2018 and will grow at a CAGR of 8.1 percent in the next decade and is projected to grow to US $118 billion in 2028.


The western wear market is defined as a total of tops/shirts, trousers/ skirts, t-shirts, denim, activewear and suits (only for men’s category). Indian western wear market in men and women category is estimated to be Rs 1,33,246 crore in 2018. Men’s segment accounts for approximately 93 percent of the market size.

Indian men’s western wear apparel market is estimated to be Rs 1,23,363 crore in 2018. Shirt and trousers category contributes 34 percent and 27 percent, respectively to men’s total western wear market and are expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.5 percent and 6 percent in the next decade.

Activewear is expected to grow at the highest rate among all other men’s western wear apparel category, at a CAGR of 15 percent by 2028. The second category to show high growth by 2028 is denim, which is expected to grow at a CAGR of 13 percent.

Indian western wear market in womenswear is estimated to be `9,882 in 2018. Currently, in Indian women’s wear apparel segment ethnic category enjoys a larger share. Denim and shirts/tops are the highest contributing categories with a total weightage of 56 percent. Activewear and denim sector is expected to grow at a CAGR of 14 percent each by 2028.

Indian western wear segment is expected to grow in the coming years and some factors like the increasing number of working women, rising urban population and increase in the younger generation will add value to the sector. Western wear will grow at a higher rate as compared to ethnic wear in the next decade. By 2028, denim and activewear are projected to depict a positive growth and are expected to be one of the major contributing categories in the sector.

Below mentioned are the major factors that will contribute to the growth of western wear segment:

There has been an increase in the urban population of India. According to a published report, urbanization in India is happening at a fast pace, with every sixth person getting urbanized globally is an Indian. It is estimated that by FY 2020, 35 percent of India’s population will be living in urban centres and will contribute to 70 – 75 percent of India’s GDP.

Increasing urbanization has brought a shift in the consumer demand towards the western wear clothing, thus leading an increase in sector growth.

Traditionally, on a broader level, women’s fashion was limited to ethnic wear. The increase in the number of working women has opened new opportunities for fashion brands in women’s workwear and western wear.

There has been a substantial increase in the number of working women in India in the past 10 years. Women are entering the professional fields which have impacted their lifestyle. As they have lesser time to shop they prefer more comfortable and western clothing.

The upcoming job seekers are young and expect the freedom to choose what they wear to their workplace. They believe that casual clothing can help to increase their work efficiency. So, more companies are shifting towards the acceptance of casual Apparel at the workplace.

The increase in the acceptability has opened new doors for the brands that are coming with the idea of smart casuals which are comfortable and yet are not typical formals.

There has been a decline in age dependency (the ratio of the dependent population size to the working-age population size). This has led to an increase in the family overall income which in return has led to a rise in disposable income thus increasing the overall apparel buying capacity.

Earlier, people use to keep a limited number of apparel, but with an increase in the buying capacity, there has been an increase in the number of apparel and decrease in the apparel usage time.

India is one of the fastest-growing nations and is expected to grow at the same pace, making it an attraction for big fashion and apparel brands. A major part of the country’s population resides in Tier II cities and also have a good buying capacity. Big fashion and Apparel brands see a big potential in the tier 2 cities. Recently H&M, a Swedish multinational clothing retailer, recently announced its plan to expand in Tier II cities of India.

In today’s world, denim is considered to be a multi-purpose apparel, which can be worn as both casual wear and everyday wear. Denim being comfortable and durable has become a trend and is widely accepted at every occasion. An international brand like Levi’s and domestic brand like Spykar have been performing well in India and seen an increase in their sales over the past few years.

India has the lowest median age across the developed and emerging countries of the world. These younger consumers are more inclined towards western culture. Youngsters prefer to wear western clothing as it is more comfortable and affordable.