Global brands boost competitiveness among Indian shirt players

global brands


In the last few years, with the entry of top global brands, business dynamics have changed in India. Competition has increased and customers have become more knowledgeable about latest trends. Interestingly, in all this, most domestic brands have held their own against established global players. While competition has increased, it has kept Indian brands on their toes with a lot of them now constantly looking to improve the consumer experience.


Competition motivates Indian brands

Indian brands have always focused on high quality and hence, they are admired globally. However, with direct competition from international brands one can witness a high level of customer service and increased product and brand knowledge. Also to strengthen the domestic brands, there has been special emphasis on visual merchandising. This has helped them to create a distinct identity.


Of course, global brands too have had their share of learning from the Indian market. Predominantly shirt brands in India are uni-product brands. But for international brands shirts are one part of their offering and not a dominant one. Typically abroad people wear layered clothing. So shirts are not necessarily an important part of the wardrobe. But in India the emphasis on shirts increases, so international brands have to adapt to Indian requirements. Experts feel, allowing FDI into the industry is a positive way to have more international players in the market.


Changing market dynamics


The growth trajectory of the country’s menswear market is at an all-time high and that’s the reason why many global brands like Celio are looking at India as good opportunity for investment. Experts feel that the presence of international brands has actually resulted in a positive rub off with consumers now expecting more options from Indian brands. At the retail level, newer and exciting formats are being developed in line with international trends and practices, leading to better consumer comfort and delight.


Shirts as a category have not just evolved with the advent of foreign players it has also helped Indian players gather a significant amount of learning. And one such learning is that fashion is not restricted to women. There are a lot of things that can be offered to men. However, there is a difference between the Indian and the international market, for example the colour stories required by Indian consumers vary from that of international brands. Indians have an affinity towards vibrant, bright colours. In Europe, the colour stories are more subtle and subdued. In winters especially the tones are more grey. While brands which have adapted to Indian market conditions have fairly brighter colours.


Small towns are more prepared for big global brands than the metros. With limited choices, there are chances that global brands will get a better response there. Tier II cities are very loyal to multi brand outlets they buy their clothes from. Even if shopping malls come up, their loyalty doesn’t waver. Multi brand outlets can take advantage of this opportunity and stock international brands. To that extent there is a big scope for global brands in Tier II cities.


The bottom line is a brand is built on its USPs and loyalty. If one can offer the consumer the right products at the right prices, there is always a place for them in the market – whether domestic or international. (source:

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