US-based casual fashion brand, Gap is looking to ramp up its India footprint via standalone and shop-in-shop (SIS) formats this year. Notably, the brand operates in the country through its local franchisee Arvind Lifestyle Brands Limited (ALBL).
Whilst the brand is planning to roll out 3 to 4 new standalone outlets and 10 SIS, it looks all set to achieve the ‘magical figure’ of Rs. 1,000-crore in revenues, the media reports suggest.
“The brand sales are as per expectation”, Parag Dani, ALBL Business Head for Gap, was quoted as saying. Though Dani didn’t disclose current revenues, he, however, did notify that men’s, women’s and infant & kids’ segments contribute roughly 38%, 28% and 34% to Gap sales in the Indian fashion retail market as of now.
Markedly, the fashion brand’s existing physical store network in India comprises 13 standalone outlets spread across Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Pune, Chennai and Indore, along with 15 SIS in multi-brand outlets (MBO) in Tier II and Tier III cities.
Going forward, ALBL is also considering partnerships with retail chains like Shopper Stop and Lifestyle for the brand’s SIS roll-out.
Noticeably, Gap also reaches nationwide through e-commerce portals, Nnnow.com (an Arvind platform) and Amazon.in. Roughly half of the brand’s entire online revenues come from smaller towns as the brand is getting a robust response in such markets, Gap India Business Head reportedly told.
Referring to the rival international brands, Zara and H&M, Dani maintained that the country’s market is big enough to accommodate several players, adding, “Unlike various other brands, Gap has products catering for a newborn to an adult, something which very few brands offer.”
Strikingly, while long-present brands Levi Strauss, Benetton and M&S’ growth in India has been rather slow, Gap’s is quite impressive (the brand’s first flagship store in India opened in mid-2015, notably). Even H&M, which debuted a few months later the same year, is also galloping towards Rs. 1,000-crore revenue-mark. However, Zara is still reckoned as India’s biggest foreign apparel brand, having already reported sales of Rs. 1,023 crores in FY 2017.
It remains to be seen which brand races ahead in this retail combat.