Smag Retails that started off as a jacket manufacturing company in 1995 has added new products to its portfolio over the years. Now it also manufactures sweat shirts and sweaters and a denim range will be added by 2013-14. What’s more, having spread its presence through some 1,600 MBOs, the company is now looking at launching own EBOs by 2014. Explains Varinder Joshi, Marketing Head, Smag Retails, “We wish to enter the southern states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala this year. We are working with Lifestyle chain and are planning to work with Big Life Ritu Wears and Chunmun. By 2014, we plan to open EBOs under the Smag brand name.”
Talking about the brand’s USP, he says, “We make affordable fashion products. Very few brands in Ludhiana are experimenting with latest trends. We make for Pepe Jeans London and Benetton and therefore, understand what sells globally. We have an edge in technology and sourcing fabrics.”
Smag’s products are also exported to the Middle East. Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Sharjah and Kuwait are their main exports market. “We would like to explore every possible channel to build our brand and spread its presence. We realize that e-commerce is the next frontier and wish to start e-retailing by winter 2012 or summer 2013 through our own e-commerce portal.”
Commenting on the knitwear industry in India, he says, “The presence of international brands is making a difference. Now T-shirts are sold all year round and are also being accepted as office wear. T-shirts, especially polos are being worn to offices preferably in shades of black, white and pastels.”
Joshi feels FDI will increase competition, which would work positively in industry’s favor because it will assist growth of the organized sector. “Indian brands will have to maintain their quality and consumer services to compete with global brands. This will prove to be a good platform for the Indian brands to build their image in the international market, but before that they have to get organized,” he adds.