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Eyewear brand Sam & Marshall India sees 350% annual growth in client base

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The monthly reach of the brand is roughly four million people and its website users are over 100,000 every month

Bengaluru: From selling products door to door to building his eyewear business, Abdus Samad has done it all in just three years. His eyewear brand Sam & Marshall India has seen its client database grow 350% annually, taking the current count to about 1 million customers. And from the start of this year to September, the brand has served about 15,000 customers in one go.

Setting up the business

Abdus Samad started his entrepreneurial journey in 2019 by riding his scooter to sell second-hand smartphones and then eyewear door to door to customers. A year later, he started his eyewear brand Sam & Marshall India from his partner’s bedroom. In those days, Samad just had enough space to pack orders and do nothing else, as the rest of the space was mostly occupied by his products. By 2021, the brand had grown its social media presence immensely and built a community around itself by serving the best products to customers. This was also the year when Samad and his team moved into a new office. “This was a dream come true for us. We have done well in 2022 so far, having served over 15,000 customers,” adds Samad. Dreams, he continues, come true if one genuinely believes in them. “This is not the end of my dream, but just the beginning,” states Samad.

Indeed, what Sam & Marshall India has achieved in just a few years of its inception is note-worthy, considering that the eyewear industry was fairly scattered in the years before the brand started. “Back then, it was either a monopoly in places or the local shoppers were not providing much variety to consumers,” explains Samad. The industry, he continues, has a good scope for the future though. “If one works well and plans things with care, one can not only excel in this industry but also do well for consumers.

And brands have caught on to this fact; nowadays while scrolling through social media, I see a lot of new brands coming up, especially in this industry. This is good because these brands are providing customers with some quirky designs,” adds Samad. No wonder then that the eyewear industry, which was worth $4 billion in 2019 (when Sam & Marshall India started), is worth about $6.5 billion in 2022.

Product differentiation

Samad is proud of the fact that his brand provides consumers with the best products at really low prices. “Moreover, when we entered the business, we decided to work on fast fashion [fashion that is cheaply produced and priced, and inspired by the latest styles] which helped us. But today, even if our customers want the ‘same product’ they had bought earlier, we focus first on sustainable fashion for the sake of the environment,” conveys Samad. The brand’s USP is that it is not trying to sell products, but is trying to sell a lifestyle and that too a healthy one. “Of course, we are doing a lot more things that are different from what other brands are doing. But this is what our USP is! After all, innovation is the core of our industry in every aspect,” says Samad. Also, since fashion goes around in circles—the trends repeating themselves but by adding something of the current time—the team at Sam & Marshall India studies the past trends and the current changes or additions in it and launches a product accordingly.

Further, for product diversification, the strategy that the brand has adopted is a little traditional. “It is all about the procurement process. We bring fewer products into the market and follow the hit-and-trial method with them. If a product works with the audience, we order it in large quantities. This is how we have diversified, and to date, we have over 1,200 designs,” shares Samad.

Outlook for the future

Samad has kept his plans for the brand really simple. “We want to scale up all the things that are working for us as well as the customers to a whole different level. We are aggressively focusing on sustainable fashion, even creating bio-based products that are timeless rather than just trendy. Also, we plan to open a chain store in 2023,” concludes Samad.

Brownie Points

  • Sam & Marshall India does not sell its products on any e-marketplace
    yet, but only on its website.
  • The brand’s revenue has risen 240% every year, while its client database has grown to about 1 million customers (an increase of 350% annually since inception).
  • Sam & Marshall India has over 20,000 followers on social media to date.
  • The monthly reach of the brand is roughly four million people. Its website users are over 100,000 every month.
  • The brand has launched more than 1,200 products in just a few years since its inception, that too despite being a bootstrapped business.

First appeared in The India D2C Yearbook 2022

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