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109°F: Finding new ways to warm up women’s wear segment

By FashionUnited


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With a consistent 80 to 100 per cent same store growth over the last four years and overall growth of 120 per cent and with the number of outlets and consumer loyalty rapidly increasing, Mumbai-based 109°F women’s wear brand from

Creative Lifestyles Pvt. Ltd is turning profit figures on its head. With a USP of bringing the latest and the best of international fashion at reasonable prices the brand is now following a rapid growth trajectory.

Having an export background and as suppliers to some of the top European fashion houses, it has a major advantage since it can follow the latest trends and offer them in India much faster. The brand has an extensive network of distribution channels and retailers who help to build a strong presence in over 250 outlets all over the country. As a one-stop shop, the brand’s product portfolio comprises of  tops, tunics, dresses, T-shirts, jeans, capris, shorts, skirts and evening wear. It also offers a range of pre-winter and winter wear like flat-knits, sweater and jackets.

“There aren’t too many players in the organized women’s western wear segment. We have at least a 20 per cent market share. The unorganized sector has a much larger share where you have the grey imports coming in from China and Thailand among other countries. We are in women’s party or occasion wear, which is slightly more fashionable and design oriented than casual wear. When we entered we saw there were very few players.  We felt as the Indian consumer had got exposed to western fashion, this segment would grow rapidly and we were proved right,” says Rahul Mehta, Managing Director.

The company recently launched a free spirited Bohemian collection which has “Zero Feel” printed garments. They have also come up with a unique fashion accessory called ‘Snood’. It’s a multi-utility fashion accessory which can be worn in seven different ways such as a scarf, muffler, head band, shoulder vest and monkey cap et al, making sure one can spot a different look each day of the week.

“Our Bohemian collection symbolizes the free spirit of the Indian consumer, which was a little constrained till now.  We have two macro ranges a year, spring/summer and autumn/winter. Within each season we have at least two to three mini lines which we regularly introduce. Any customer walking into our store will find something new almost every two weeks,” says Ritu Jani, Head, Product Design and Development.

The company also caters to manufacturers and exporters of ladies value added embellished woven and knitted garments having a production capacity of 50,000-75,000 pieces per month with major markets for high fashion being Italy, France and the US. Their customers include Miss Sixty, Antik Batik, Alberta Ferretti, Day Birger, Diesel, Kenzo, Moschino, DDP, House Of Fraser/Arcadia, Stella Forest, Tara Jarmon, STL/P.G. Sports, Armand Basi, Morgan among others.

Radhesh Kagzi, President, Creative Lifestyles adds, “We are present in about 150 large format stores with shop-in-shops. We are with Shoppers Stop, Central, Pantaloons, Lifestyle and Reliance Trends besides about 200 MBOs. We also have 10 exclusive outlets and three franchisees. They are in Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Amritsar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Kanpur, Siliguri and Gangtok. We hope to have 50 exclusive outlets by March 2012. Most of these will be franchisees.”