retail brands Aug, 22 2017

We have opened around 50 stores in 17 different Tier I and II cities across India: Paras Mahajan

In conversation with Paras Mahajan, CEO, Red Riding Scarves, who spoke about plans to get into a franchise model and other important details. Read on..

By Ekta Sharma
We have opened around 50 stores in 17 different Tier I and II cities across India: Paras Mahajan

With over 500 + distributors pan-India, this unique scraves only brand is ruling the industry. After setting up 50 successful stores, Red Riding Scarves is ready to take up franchise model and is seeking the right partners to join hands with. Paras Mahajan, CEO, Red Riding Scarves told us about the challenges of highly unorganised scarves industry and how are they doing their bit to change the scenario. Read on..

You almost have reached 50 stores pan-India. When are you planning to take up franchise model? What benefits you see ahead via this model?
We are planning to get into the franchise model of business very soon. As we intend to expand the number of our stores geographically, we want to ensure that we reach our target audience without any inconvenience and hassle. For this, we foresee the franchise model of business ideal to meet our demands and fulfil our aspirations. The benefits that we will get are ample. Some of them are-

Local business knowledge- Our country is diverse in terms of consumer choices keeping in mind the variety in terms of culture. Franchisees allow businesses to understand local market conditions and thus help to adapt and customize products accordingly. This is especially true for consumer- centric items like clothing and apparels.

Risk reduction- Franchisee is a great way of risk reduction as they have established systems that are designed to promote chances for success. Responsibilities like investment in operation, inventory cost and managerial expenses are taken care of by the franchise owner. Thus, the risks involved in running a business get reduced to a large extent.

Capital management & Brand expansion- All thecapital required to open and operate a business unit is provided by the franchisee. Thus, investment by the franchisor is vey less. This enables franchisors to focus on building their brand without worrying to repay the lenders. Also, the money saved can be used for other purposes like marketing and advertising, improving the quality of goods or services, etc.

Speed in growth- This is an ideal course to capture a market leadership position before competition arrives. Franchising allows companies to compete with larger businesses as well by providing support in various forms.

Staffing benefit & Increased Profitability- Franchising allows franchisors to function effectively with a much leaner organization as franchisees assume many of the company’s operations. It provides other advantages as well in terms of responsibility for the day-to-day management. This allows the organization more time to invest in expansion and thus increases the chances of profitability.

Tell us about your origin and your uniqueness.
Our company, Red Riding Scarves was founded in April, 2016 by Yogesh Jain (MD) and me. It is a part of The Mahak Group. Our products represent the pinnacle of European and Indian Craftsmanship and are unsurpassed in their quality and attention to detail. We offer a wide variety of scarves with very cool and classy fabrics available at affordable prices. Presently, the brand has a turnover of INR 50 Crore selling both at online and offline stores.

Where your stores are located and what are your expansion plans for this year?
We have opened around 50 stores in 17 different Tier I and II cities across India. Some of them include Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Punjab, Amritsar, Delhi/NCR, Jaipur, Aurangabad, Rajasthan etc. We are already importing in Dubai, UK & U.S.A and within this year would be planning to move in other neighbouring countries. We have now become an e-commerce platform and are available on android app too. So, digitally we are easily available.

What qualities do you seek in a prospective franchise partner
Product Flexibility & Adaptability- Every market has a slightly different audience keeping in mind the diversity in cultures across India. Thus, it is important to customize the products to be able to meet varying demands.

Brand Image- Brand image of the franchisee is important as it helps establish reputation in the market.

Offering- The ability of a franchisee to stand apart from the competition and provide the desired products is a critical determinant too.

Franchisee-Franchisor Relationship- This is very important for the success of this model of business as mutual partnership that is focused on growing the franchisor and the franchisee simultaneously creates value or both.

Don’t you think the market of scarves is much unorganised and mostly there are non branded players? What are your steps to make yourself visible and distinct?
Yes, approx. Rs 10,000 crore Indian market for scarves and stoles is unorganised. But what we see is the immense opportunity in this where we have the first mover advantage in terms of a branded player. We aim at giving shape to this 95% unorganized sector with our products. What makes us distinct is our quality and designs. The designs are edgy, urbane, classy yet elegant, perfect for every occasion and catering to the fashion and styling needs of women of all ages. We provide products at affordable prices with no compromise on quality of fabric.

What is the most challenging part in your industry apart from being unorganised?
Fashion constantly evolves. We need to keep pace with it and come up with appealing, elegant and trendy scarves. In this fashionably inclined world, where everyone tries to look better every day and is ready to experiment, we intend to make scarves an indispensable part of the attire. This is one of the crucial and challenging focus areas of our business.

Related: Selling an aromatic experience

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