Along with clothing retailers and e-commerce platforms,now footwear companies in India are scouting for funds from PE investors to push up brand presence through expansion, while seeking growth. For instance, Kolkata-based ‘Khadim’s is in advanced talks with PE investors to raise Rs 80-100 crores.
Khadims is looking at expanding its footprint beyond the Eastern market, from where it gets 70 percent of its total sales. After venturing into footwear retailing in 1993, Khadim’s today has the largest number of exclusive retail outlets after Bata and has the largest number of stores in Eastern India. The company has a network of over 630 exclusive retail stores including 105 company owned outlets. It also reaches out to its target audience through 528 exclusive dealers across India with another 385 non-exclusive outlets. Footwear is the main business of the company and 87 percent sales come from this business.
Mumbai-based ‘Catwalk’ shoes is also said to be looking for PE investments. However, its proposed deal with India Value Fund to raise Rs 100 crores did not work out due to differences over key deliverables. Now, the chain is in talks with another global equity investor to raise funds. The company is looking at offering a 27 percent stake, which will increase to 51 percent in over five years. Apart from retail network expansion, getting rid of the Rs 40-crores debt is on company’s agenda. Catwalk shoes are currently available at 400 point of sales, including 40 company-owned stores.
Bangalore-based Sara Soule is also exploring funding options. Sara Soule is a contract manufacturer of soles and shoes, which supplies to brands such as Bata, Clarks, Kenneth Cole, Espirit and Hush Puppies. If the chain gets the required investment, it would be able to expand its core manufacturing business and boost its front-end retailing venture ‘Ruosh’. ‘Ruosh’ currently has 13 stores across Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune, Mumbai and NCR.