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Fashion retailers to rely on discounts to boost sales post lockdown

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The disastrous impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the fashion retail industry have been in talks for a while now. The stakeholders are acting actively to mitigate these impacts. Out of the various strategies proposed by the retailers, resorting to discounts remains the most critical one.

Many lifestyle and fashion brands are offering discounts ranging from 20%-50% to lure customers and subside the harmful side-effects of the lockdown. The nationwide imposed lockdown restricted the spring-summer collection from going on the floors, as a result of which the retailers are seeking to sell it on big rebates.

Brands like Vero Moda, Only, Woodland among others are adopting the “buy now ship later” policy on their websites to ensure fluidity of sales. On the other hand, third-party eCommerce sellers like Myntra, Ajio, Koovs, and Shein have also received a green signal to deliver in green and orange zones.

In a fast-moving world, fashion is moving at an equal pace, hence, bringing months old inventory to the table at the original prices would just add to the dead stock. Therefore, to avoid such risks, retailers are being compelled to offer discounts. They are optimistic that this strategy will help them reduce the burden and the losses they have incurred during the lockdown period.

Noting that fashion is one of the hardest-hit categories due to the lockdown, Ankur Bisen, senior vice president, retail and consumer at Technopak, a management consulting firm, said “The current inventory brand will not be relevant once market fully. Brands have to sell off inventory, and therefore they are incentivizing consumers (through discounts and offers) to buy products,” he explained.

“Despite the discounts, brands will not witness scores of bargain hunters glued to online shopping, said internet economy expert, Sreedhar Prasad. “The experts also predict that the people who were largely shielded from the financial impacts of the pandemic will be the first ones to step into the retail world once again. “I believe these shoppers are not discount-driven. They have stable jobs with regular income flowing in and steady savings, they don’t mind spending ₹2,000 or upwards,” Prasad added.

The famous personal care brand, Bath and Body Works, on the contrary, believes that the brand-loyal customers will continue to shop from their favorite brands with or without discounts. “There is a spike in sales online on our website because our loyal customers are currently not able to get their desired products through any other medium,” said Tushar Ved, President, Major Brands India, which retails Bath and Body Works.

Furthermore, Realizing the growing efficacy of online platforms during such times, Bestseller India is emphasizing its virtual reach with a belief that it is going to give them a boost. upon asking about discounting strategy, “We are offering discounts but they are not deep,” said Vineet Gautam, chief executive officer (CEO) and country head, Bestseller India.

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Fashion

After adding 5, Shoppers Stop plans to add 15 new stores in next 9 months

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February 26: As a part of its expansion plan even as the setback of the pandemic continues, departmental store chain Shoppers Stop has added another 5 stores as of now during the current financial year. Along with this, Shoppers Stop is planning to add another 12 to 15 stores over a period of the next 9 months.

This information was disclosed by Venugopal Nair, MD & CEO of Shoppers Stop while he was speaking on the sidelines of the Retail Leadership Summit 2021 organised by the Retailers Association of India.

Nair claimed that the company is foreseeing growth is the upcoming period with each passing month. He also mentioned that the average bill value per customer is even higher now and improving.

On the contrary, Also Read: Shoppers Stop witnesses huge net losses of Rs 25 crore in December quarter

He further added, “We are looking to open 12 to 15 stores in the next nine months. We did close down three stores in this financial year but that cannot be attributed to Covid as it was part of the annual rationalisation of our portfolio. Normally December is a better month than January, but this time we saw higher footfalls in January than in December. That is a good sign that consumers are continuing to come back. Consumer confidence has improved with the vaccines being rolled out. We intend to carry forward some of the steps we took to save costs. These measures helped us become a more efficient and productive organisation.

The company went for several cost-saving measures under the pandemic. Further, Nair added that the lockdown granted the company an opportunity to witness and improvise the areas that could be streamlined.

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Fashion

Stora Enso, H&M, IKEA backs TreeToTextile; helps build demo plant for sustainable fibre

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February 25: After years of research, brands Stora Enso, H&M and IKEA said that they are together all set to build a demonstration plant in Sweden in order to generate a new and more sustainable wood-based textile fibre. The information was bestowed by the brands earlier on Tuesday.

With this development, the brands aim at reducing their climatic footprint and pollution as they are in high need of affordable greener alternatives to cotton, polyester and traditional viscose. The projects of developing ways to turns the tree into textile fibre have various Nordic pulp makers as a part of the development.

TreeToTextile in a statement said that its plant will be having a production capacity of 1,500 tonnes while its owners will fund a 35 million euro ($42.6 million) investment. The fourth part-owner of TreeToTextile, Lars Stigsson said that the plant would be located at Nymolla mill in Sweden, which is owned by Stora Enso (a Finnish forestry group) and its construction will be beginning in the near future.

Also read: India’s first Fashion Forward Fellowship on sustainable fashion; focuses on water stewardship

The statement also quoted, “The novel process is deliberately designed to have low energy demand and low chemical need. It is engineered to suit large scale production and includes a recovery system for reusing chemicals. By investing in a demonstration plant, we are finally on the go. With it, we are turning years of R&D into reality to increase the biobased share on the textile market to support climate action.”

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Fashion

German brand Birkenstock launches first mono-brand store in Bengaluru

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Birkenstock in Bengaluru, February 25: After successfully planning expansion in India, Birkenstock has landmarked its presence in Bengaluru as well. German footwear brand Birkenstock has launched in Bengaluru as the store has become the brand’s largest orthopaedic display footbed in Asia.

This footbed consists of every design of the brand which would fit each customer just right. Not only focusing on the sale of their products, but the brand also uses sustainable core materials for production such as natural latex milk, jute and natural cork. These natural materials altogether when crafted create supreme quality footwear.

Birkenstock has successfully launched its 4 stores in India’s financial centre Mumbai and other states like Hyderabad, Chennai, and Delhi. This store in Bengaluru will be the first mono-brand of Birkenstock.

Also read: German footwear brand Birkenstock plans expansion across India

Jens Hattab, Regional Managing Director Middle East Africa India at BIRKENSTOCK, said, “Continuing with our strong rollout of stores across India, we are further strengthening the brand presence in the South with our impressive new location in Bengaluru. Our quality products enjoy an abundant consumer appreciation in the country. The launch of the Bengaluru store is a stepping stone to strengthen our presence across India and continue with our growth plan for the year ahead with great conviction.

Birkenstock entered the Indian market back in December 2019, however, its history dates back to 1774. As triggered by the covid-19 era, the German brand also launched its e-commerce platform in order to ensure that the buyers can shop from the comfort of their homes without risking the lives amid covid spread.

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