Global fashion brands to increase local sourcing
INTERNATIONAL fashion brands such as Nautica, Puma, Marks & Spencer and Espirit have stepped up their local sourcing as they expand their presence in the domestic market. With advantages of higher profits, lesser lead time and competitive price points, these brands are now shedding their inhibition towards local sourcing. Nautica, the sportswear brand introduced by VF-Arvind Brands in India, plans to source locally the core or standard products that are non-seasonal. Puma too plans to take its local sourcing of apparel to the maximum extent possible for the domestic stores next year. “We already source 80% of the apparel that we sell in our Indian stores. This gives us several advantages like saving on duties and cutting down transport time and cost. We will increase our local sourcing as much as possible, but it will never go up to 100% as we also have a lot of licensed products,” Puma India’s managing director Rajiv Mehta said. Depending on the category, the import duty could range from 30% to 40%. Nautica plans to increase its sourcing by 10% next year. At present, it locally sources close to 15% of products and this will go up to 25% next year. “However, we intend to locally source majority of our standard products sold throughout the year. It makes sense to make production of core products in-house as it enables us to offer value to customers for the products,” said brand head of Nautica, Dhruv Bogra. Nautica plans to have 12 exclusive outlets by end of next year, including the existing seven. Similarly, Marks & Spencer plans to source 40% of its products locally. One of the earlier entrants to the domestic market, United Colors of Benetton sources its entire range locally. While other international brands such as GAS, which entered India early this year through a 50:50 joint venture with Raymond, is also looking at sourcing locally next year. At present, GAS imports its entire apparel range. Long-term plans also include setting up of an independent manufacturing facility in India. GAS could look at either using the manufacturing facilities of its joint venture partner Raymond or it could set up an exclusive facility for the brand.