Retail Jul, 19 2013

No Kidding! It's a big biz!!

According to retail consultancy firm Technopak Advisors: "Driven by huge demand from brand conscious children, the Indian kids wear retail market is expected to touch Rs 58000 crore by 2014." Is the kids wear category crawling towards success? If yes, Let

By Ekta Sharma Verma, TFW Bureau
Sr. Sub-editor
No Kidding! It's a big biz!!

According to Supam Maheshwari, Founder and CEO, FirstCry: “The total market size of the kids wear industry is around Rs 38,000-40,000 crore and branded kids wear comprise 10 -12 per cent  of the market.” With this augmentation and demand, kids wear Industry is expanding at a much faster rate. The trend is heating up in the premium children's wear segment that keeps in touch with international trends.

Girls Vs Boys

The market for girl's wear is demanding than boy's wear throughout the world. Boy's apparel tends to focus on basics. Girl's wear, however, thrives in all channels from specialty stores to department stores to discounters. Another factor that improves the girl’s wear market is matching accessories. Vast options are available in girl’s accessories ranging from hair bands to clips and stockings. This makes the parents show a loose hand when it comes to girl’s wear. Although style is important from the parents perspective, higher-cost brands or international brands are generally reserved for special occasions. Naresh Khatar, Chairman & Managing Director of Me n Moms opines: “Parents do have an affinity towards international brands but what really matters is quality and value for money. The discerning customer has become more quality conscious and wants to scrutinize all aspects of products before purchasing it.” On the other hand, Shantanu Dugar, Director, Nautinati says: “There are many international brands available in the market but Indian brands are likely to be accepted more than international counterparts as they can provide an unmatched value proposition and adapt to local taste profiles. Contrary to popular belief, the share of branded kids wear in the market has shrunk considerably over the last few years as some key brands have faced a major correction in their business. I would presume that branded apparel is still less than 10% of the kids market in India.”

Why Franchising?

Most of the brands believe that franchising is the best way to expand a business in a much faster way. Maheshwari of FirstCry says: “Only a small fraction of the Indian population does online purchases. Franchising has definitely helped FirstCry create physical store presence. We have 4 franchise models and currently have 50 franchisees. We plan to have at least 100 franchisees by March 2014.” On the other hand Khatar of Me n Mom takes franchising as a win-win formula for both consumer and franchisee. He says: “Growth, expansion and power to reach out to wider customer base across the country has been the reason for us to take the franchise route.  Franchising also enables us to expand our reach to consumers.”

The better route

With the increasing demand now, almost all the brands are foraying into retail franchise and e-store formats. Khatar says: “For our brand the customer is of prime importance. So, we have incorporated all the three distribution channels - retail, retail franchise and e-store. As a buying pattern the basic necessities like diapers, wipes, and toiletries work well on the e-store. For apparels and furniture the parents prefer to walk in and buy. Many a times it is more impulse buying.” According to Maheshwari of FirstCry- “Both the parents and the kids have become brand conscious but there are very few choices. Affordability is also a key parameter as kids outgrow the clothes fast. So the brands have to provide quality products at an affordable price range.” Dugar of Nautinati feels that a Dot com business cannot thrive without a tangible interface between a brand and a target customer such as a retail or franchise store. Amit Chhabra, President, Sales & Marketing, Eteenz said: “We have a mix of company owned and franchisee run stores. Dynamics of running these two models is unique. Franchising is a route for fast expansion. We followed this route with a strong back up of our processes for flawless controlling of the stores and making them profitable.”

Expansion on cards

A market study by ASSOCHAM, Market of Indian Kids wear, shows that “Rising media exposure, high disposable income of the parents, fashion sense and brand consciousness among children are driving factors of kids apparel market in India.” It has pointed out that Kids fashion has seeped down to tier II and tier III cities like Dehradun, Chandigarh, Pune, Nashik and Indore, Varanasi etc. FirstCry currently has 50 franchisees  and plans to have at least 100 franchisees by March 2014. The brands goal is to have 500 stores by March 2016 in India. Maheshwari of FirstCry feels that this is still a sunrise industry as far as India is concerned and the brands are just getting a toe hold. Me n Moms has a total of 22 stores across India and 7 out of them are franchisee owned. The brand plans to add 50 new stores within the next three years and will opt for the franchise route for some stores. Nautinati has three EBO’s and four prospective franchise stores. By the end of financial year 2013-14, the brand will have 15 franchise locations. Eteenz mostly opens stores in tier two, three and four. The brand has its presence in Ongole, Srikakulam, Karim Nagar, Indore, Bhopal, Chandigarh, Ferozpur, Patiala, Hoshiarpur, Rohtak, Karnal, Ambala, Bhatkal, Gurbarga, Mandya.

Franchise Facts:





Rs 25-65 lakh

1000-3000 sq.ft

Me n Moms

Rs 3300 per sq.ft

800 -1000 sq.ft


Rs 7-11 lakh

700 sq.ft


Rs 15 lakh Approx

500-3000 sq.ft

Related: Three most-profitable Retail categories for 2016 at Malls

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