Pavers’ expansion strategies for India

Friday, 02 March 2012

With a humble beginning from her warehouse in York Cathie Paver has today become a value-for-money shoe brand that targets over-45 markets, has 100 stores and 900 employees working across shops, catalogue and online operations. Pavers’ retail operations in India spread over 25 stores and another 50 concessions. The numbers are supposed to double next year.

India provides about 10 per cent of its revenues at the moment, but is expected to equal UK in five years. Pavers’ has always worked on a strategy of penetrating into the markets neglected by the other footwear companies.

The old customers that return to Pavers’ for their footwear needs are the ones who indulge in leisure shopping from the comfort of their homes, so the company uses a lot of direct selling methods via catalogues and the internet to ensure it can find its customers where they are. Through its recent initiative to reach out to its customers Pavers launched a branded channel on the Sky platform, dedicated to its shoes.

By next year, Pavers is aiming to sell about £5 million of shoes through this route. The other arm of the business is Pavers’ Indian shoe chain. The company has sourced shoes from India for a long time, but having seen one of its big Chinese suppliers grow from one factory into a chain of 15,000 retail stores, it wondered whether it could attempt the same move in India, where the retail market was much less developed. Mr Paver says that the Chinese supplier offered a lot of advice on how to tackle the Indian market.