Challenge Overseas, a trousers manufacturing company with a history of making trousers for last 23 years under the brand name Challenge, is planning to launch another brand called Zapata. The designer range of trousers is aimed at men between 15 to 30 years. Commenting on the company’s vision for 2020, Babubhai Ayar, Director, Challenge Enterprise says, “By 2020, I expect the industry to set fashion trends. Glamour has come into the garment industry and the new fashion trends will continue to enter the industry. I want to maintain the status Challenge has earned over the years as dedicated trouser brand.
With Challenge, the company started making formal trousers in 1989, when readymade trousers had not yet taken off in India. “There were just a few legwear brands. Right now India has a big formal trouser market and consumers have taken to readymade trousers,” he explains. Challenge currently makes only formal trousers with fabric blended in fine fibers like wool and terry rayon, linen, polyester and cotton casual trousers with a total formal look. Elaborating, Ayar says, “We sell premium trousers under the name Exceptional, terry rayon under Golden, linen under Cocaine, polyester under Celebration and cotton under Cotton Casuals. I make three and a half lakh trouser pieces a year. Formal trousers come in four segments - polywool, TRC, linen and cotton, so we have large volumes to work upon.”
The company adds 15 to 20 per cent MBOs each year and the collection is as of now present in 150 MBOs all over India. These include Jayalakshmi in Kerala, Chennai Silks, RS Brothers, Amarsons, Zamkudi and LFS store Shoppers Stop. “I export 50 per cent of my production. We have been exporting to the Gulf for 15 years under the brand Challenge. We are at Lulus, which has 70 shops in the Gulf and go to 40 Lulu outlets. We are with the group Snow White. Now, I am interested in exporting to Europe and next year, I will start working with some chain shops there,” Ayar sums up.