luxury retail Oct, 22 2012

Cashing on affordability for luxury brands

Navratras mark the beginning of festive season and the most auspicious time for shopping and weddings. Cashing on this festive spirit and to provide Indians an experience of luxury shopping is an upcoming luxury brand seeking franchisees for expansion.

By Abha Garyali
Sub Editor
Cashing on affordability for luxury brands

Indian weddings usually symbolises great pomp and show, extravaganza, license to shop till you drop and lot of expenditure on anything or everything. Wedding shopping is a lifetime experience and you can explore as many things as possible to celebrate the special occasion.

Cashing on this festive spirit and wedding season are Indian and international brands. Luxury brands are also making inroads to the market with the introduction of their latest creations and expanding their presence via franchise route. Till a decade back the nation was not at all aware of big brands that have become a part of our everyday life now. With increase in brand consciousness more and more people have become keener to spend some extra bucks on branded products. This can be understood by the expansion of apparel, food and beverage and other brands in tier II cities and towns. People from these cities have also accepted brands, both national and international. It shows that now it is time for Indian entrepreneurs to climb the ladder further and introduce luxury brands so that the middle class people also get the feel of owing Indian luxury products.

Luxury brands in India

India is not bereft from international luxury brands. Brands like Tommy Hilfiger, TAG Heuer, Armani, Gucci, Versace (the list is endless) have made a special place for themselves in India. Indians no longer consider these brands ‘out of budget’. The middle class, which consists of the major segment of population, are getting more inclined towards luxury brands. Looking at this popularity more and more international brands have entered the nation. Till a few years back the luxury brands were only visible at airports and few selected areas, where the elite used to visit. However, now it is quite common to come across these brands in malls or high streets as well. The trend indicates the acceptance of luxury brands by the middle class as well. Recognising this popularity, Indian entrepreneurs have also been encouraged to start a luxury brand and adopt the franchise route for its expansion.

Latest entry

Recognising the development Indian entrepreneurs who earlier were doubt of acceptance of extravagance among Indians have also stepped into luxury market segment.

Audelade: Luxury in franchising

Audelade is an Indian luxury brand known for its accessories including bags and shoes, which have rich work of gold and silver on them. The concept is the first of its kind in India. Indian consumers are always looking for newer and innovative products therefore the concept is being accepted and liked. This concept also gives customers an opportunity to spend money on a luxury product which is also an asset.  Kripesh Sanghvi, Director, Audelade shares: “Audelade is India’s first home grown luxury brand and not only do we aim at providing luxury products, we also deliver our customer with investment opportunity as  all our products have been hand woven gold in 14k, 18k  and 22k and 92.5 per cent sterling silver that is rhodium plated with anti- tarnish finish.”

Why franchise route?

The concept of franchising has become very popular with mostly all big brands taking the franchise route. As shared by Sanghvi: “Success is something every businessman looks to achieve through expansion and brand awareness. Audelade would also like to reach out to a bigger markets and the right target group by taking the franchise route.” He further adds: “Franchising gives an opportunity to reach out to a bigger audience and also build their brand name.

High investment with high profits

Being a luxury brand, Audelade needs a high investment by franchisees. Approximately an entrepreneur would need Rs 90 lakh to 1.2 crore for becoming a franchisee of the brand. Other requisites for a franchisee are that he should have great knowledge and good taste in luxury, which will help in providing the customers with the quality service which the brand, Audelade promises to deliver.

Look towards future

Acknowledging the acceptance of the brand by consumers it can be guaranteed that the concept would be successful with many others following suit. Sanghvi also said: “Although the concept is at its initial stages the future will have a lot of franchise outlets. This would be profitable for both the franchisor and franchisee.”

Roadblocks on the way

Audelade provides a product which has never been seen before, this is a challenge in itself, as it becomes difficult to educate the people for the same. Finding a proper location for its outlet can also be a challenge. This would include the area, the type of competition around and the people that will visit the area, etc.

To conclude it would not be wrong to believe that Indians are now ready to afford luxury buying. Thus entrepreneurs aspiring to capture the attention of the people for luxury products and are ready to invest in luxury brands can explore franchise opportunity in the segment.

Related: Exquisitely designed biz opportunity

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