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Reliance Retail revamping Trends stores with new-age, tech-enabled features

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The company is revamping around 150 Trends stores pan-India with a new brand identity

New Delhi: Reliance Retail said it is revamping Trends fashion stores across the county by adding contemporary and tech-enabled features ranging from self-checkout counters to electronic shelf labels to attract customers of younger generations.

Reliance Retail is revamping around 150 Trends stores pan-India with a new brand identity. The stores will have a new look right from the fa ade to fixtures, lighting, ceiling and flooring, becoming more aspirational for shoppers, the retailer said.

Trends, an affordable fashion and lifestyle retailer which operates more than 2,300 stores in over 1,100 towns and cities across India, has opened its first such store with a new brand identity in Surat with several more in the pipeline to be opened shortly.

Now all new Trends stores to be opened by Reliance Retail in the future will be based on the new format, which may also have a dedicated space for local artesian to showcase the city’s identity.

Reliance fashion and lifestyle chief executive officer Akhilesh Prasad said consumers nowadays are demanding fresh and unique experiences.

“In our latest Trends store opened at VIP Road, Surat, we have introduced a brand new retail identity by incorporating several new-age tech interventions in the form of self-checkouts, electronic shelf labels, RFID-enablement and dual-sided cash tills,” Prasad told PTI.

Moreover, several global best practices have also been adapted for merchandising and product display, leading to quicker product discovery, he added.

Trends accounts for a major share of Reliance Retail’s garment sales. It operates more than 4,000 fashion and apparel stores, housing brands such as Trends, Centro, Azorte and Fashion Factory. “Given the brand’s vast appeal across town classes, the new concept remains warm and inclusive,” said Prasad.

He further added: “We have dedicated space in our stores where local artists are invited to express the city’s identity in their most unique/artistic ways. The start has been made with the Surat store where the city’s skyline has been represented with thread work.”

The new concept is designed by an international innovation studio.

In its quarterly results last week Reliance said its retail business is witnessing a trend towards premiumisation, where people are spending more on articles such as apparel and footwear.

“On the fashion and lifestyle, our stores business for apparel and footwear, we saw a significant uptick in-store traffic as well as growing average bill values as we see people buying more items as well as a trend towards premiumisation where people are spending more,” Reliance Retail chief finance officer Dinesh Taluja had said in the earnings call.

It is seeing a “significant evolution” in customer behaviour where earlier office attire and casual wear used to be different.

“We are seeing a merging of the two where the semi-casuals, both in non-office and office wear is getting acceptable. So, there’s a trend where people are looking to buy something which can be used both in office and outside and we are capitalising on that trend. We are seeing a significant uptake in smart casuals as well as leisure,” he said.

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