Mufti aims to open 50-70 new stores pan India
Denim brand Mufti, plans to open new stores in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi, and Hyderabad and in Tier II cities like Pune, Bhubaneswar and Tier III cities like Alwar, Siliguri.
Mufti, a denim and casual wear brand, plans to open 50-70 new stores across India by the end of 2019. The brand will also be focusing on e-tail strategy in order to attract more consumers.
Currently, Mufti retails through 293 EBOs (Exclusive Brand Outlets) pan India, 1200 MBOs (Multi-Brand Outlets), 110 LFSs (Large Format Stores like Shoppers Stop and Central). It is also present on all major e-commerce platforms including its own website, offering a vast product portfolio comprising of jeans, trousers, T-shirts, blazers, winter wear/outerwear, etc.
The brand was also associated with the youth icon and actor Kartik Aaryan. Kamal Khushlani, Founder & MD, Mufti, said, “We are also using store windows as a significant marketing medium because they create the nudge for people to walk in the store and consider sampling and buying the latest designs. We are also using digital sales distribution as a mechanism to evaluate brand receptivity in smaller towns and use that as an expansion strategy.”
Today, when a customer looks at a model wearing fashion in a well-coordinated manner, their knowledge and appreciation of fashion significantly increases. This increases their willingness to make a purchase from a fashionable brand, thereby increasing the sales.
Khushlani stated that Mufti’s major markets are the metros and Tier II cities, yet they have a good presence in Tier III cities as well having a strong hold in the distribution channel across the country. The brand plans to open new stores in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi, and Hyderabad and in Tier II cities like Pune, Bhubaneswar and Tier III cities like Alwar, Siliguri, etc.
In India, men’s fashion industry has evolved leaps and bounds and a version of standing out in the crowd is no longer shunned but has become an essential part of dressing up. Most work spaces are now approaching a more casual work wear culture, which has further empowered the casual wear segment.
According to Khushlani, even though the demand for their clothes is high, one of the major challenges that are currently witnessed are in-store rentals. The cost of rentals in high-streets and malls has significantly increased over the last 7-8 years, which has put tremendous pressure on the brand’s profitability. The other challenge is to create a supply chain which is agile and responsive. Therefore, the supply chain needs to respond to fast-changing fashion-led by internet research and other e-commerce partners; which will effectively deliver merchandise on a consistent basis to retail. The challenge is the ‘discount culture’. “What started as a means for brands to liquidate end of season inventory and offer customer discounts at the same time, has become a mainstay in the e-commerce era. This leaves lesser margins for the brands to operate,” Khushlani added.
While talking about technology initiative, Khushlani said that they are trying to solve the higher consumer satisfaction of availability. They are using technology as a backend to create prediction models wherein they can place the product where consumer walks-in with what exactly they need to purchase. This process keeps on getting better by the usage of technology and data management. “We also keep track of the purchasing pattern of the customer through CRM and make customized recommendations either through manual or digital mediums,” Khushlani said.
Another opportunity for consumers is to buy on digital medium wherein consumer can engage, inspire and buy a product at the click of a button leading into a larger penetration on their website and other e-commerce portals.