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Shaine Soni crowned Miss Transqueen India 2020 pageant

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December 21: A fashion designer by profession, Shaine Soni earlier on Saturday was crowned as the winner of Miss Transqueen India 2020 pageant. The winner is now going to represent India at the Miss International Queen which will take place next year. This pageant is the world’s biggest competition for transgender women. The crowned winner looks at the opportunity to work for the empowering and bettering the lives of transwomen.

Talking about her journey and the win, “When Reena approached me for Miss Transqueen India for the first season in 2017, I was always there to support her but I wasn’t comfortable coming out at that time because of family pressure.”

Soni won this pageant which involves multiple rounds such as for photoshoots, talent rounds etc. Talking about Miss Transqueen India 2020, Reena Rai the founder and chairperson of the organisation who is also identified as cisgender talked about her aim through this pageant. This was the fourth edition of the Miss Transqueen pageant that celebrates the spirit of the LGBTQ+ community.

Also read: Rubaru Mrs India announces its glamorous journey of Mrs India 2020

During a telephonic interview, Rai said that her pageant is not only about beauty, but it is also about inclusion and empowerment. She added, “If I am going to send someone without holding a competition, then I have to make sure that they are a very strong candidate, the best of the best, someone who knows the value of (becoming Miss) Transqueen 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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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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