Fabindia sales cross Rs 1,000 crore mark, becomes India’s largest retail apparel brand

Fabindia sales cross Rs 1,000 crore mark, becomes India's largest retail apparel brandFabindia sales have crossed the Rs 1,000 crore mark. Pictured: Fabindia retail outlet in Khan Market, New Delhi.Wikimedia commons

Retail outlet brand Fabindia Overseas crossed the Rs 1,000 crore sales mark to become the largest retail apparel in the country. The company was notably ahead of arch rivals Zara and Levis among other brands.

During the fiscal year 2014-15, the textile company reportedly witnessed a 12% rise in sales worth Rs 1,148 crore. During the same time, the company’s domestic business grew 25% to touch base at Rs 767 crore, whereas Zara clocked consolidated sales of Rs 720 crore, The Economic Times said.

The company’s no-discount policy has perhaps attributed to its constant cash flow.

“Customers are moving to one of two responses to retail. Either they are responding to products as commodities, or investing in curated products and experience. We will continue to focus on the quality of our design and curation,” said William Bissell, Managing Director at Fabindia, the daily reported.

Fabindia was founded by John Bissell in 1960, it initially started out as a company that exported home furnishing. By the 1980s, the company was well-known for its hand woven fabric. In the mid 1990s, his son William (present MD) took over the company and launched the first retail store in Delhi. Fabindia currently has 205 stores in 81 cities and 7 countries, according to the company’s website.

“The brand has been consistent to its core and they have been adding newer categories to remain relevant and also earn higher margins. The challenge is to continue the momentum since their sourcing is dependent on thousands of craftsman instead of few large manufacturing units,” Devangshu Dutta, Chief Executive at retail consultancy Third Eye, told The Economic Times.

On the competition front, leading retail outlets such as Lifestyle, Shoppers Stop and Westside are increasing their range of brands to attract more customers. There is also stiff competition from online retailers such as Flipkart, Jabong and Koovs among others who offer consumers a wide range of ethnic wear.

Last month, a private equity arm of Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH), the world’s largest luxury goods company, had planned to sell its stake in Fabindia overseas with a target of Rs 660 crore for an 8% stake of the Indian retail company, Brands Equity said.

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