Thriving to be a leading player in women’s fashion, with a popular brand 109°F, Creative Lifestyles is now working hard on its launch an Indo-western brand ‘Fusion Beats’. As Rahul Mehta, Managing Director of Creative Lifestyles says, “We want to straddle the entire women’s wear segment in the long run including a possible entry in sleepwear and innerwear segment.” Their flagship brand 109°F is aimed at fashion conscious women between 22 to 35 years. Mehta says they are positioning 109°F as a brand whose wearer is a bold, assertive and self-confident woman. In fact, 109°F has created a niche for itself and has been felicitated by several awards so far which include: ‘Best Debutant Brand at Central’, ‘Special Jury Award for Retail Excellence by Asia Retail Congress’ and ‘Best Women’s Wear Store at Inorbit Mall, Vashi’.
believes that the USP of the brand has helped them to grow at an impressive pace. “We are offering to the Indian consumer, perhaps for the first time, the latest European fashion with an Indian cut and keeping Indian sensibilities in mind. Our thrust is on shop-in-shops in the fast growing large format stores, combined with building a strong MBO network, and finally supported by our own EBOs.” As of now, they have 251 shop-in-shops, 165 MBOs, and 21 EBOs. The brand collection is also available in Ecuador, Sri Lanka, Kuwait and Nepal and through e-platforms like Fashion & You, and 99 Labels.com.
Mehta says their aim is now to continue to be the leader in their category and to widen the exposure of the brand and take it to the newer markets including domestic and overseas. He sees no threat to his brand with the government allowing 100 per cent FDI in single brand retail. “I see no threat to the local industry by encouraging FDI in single or multi brand retail,” says Mehta, elaborating further that growth of organized retail, as we have seen in the last decade, has helped the domestic industry tremendously. “If the growth of a Big Bazaar or a Shoppers Stop has helped the local industry, I see no reason why the growth of a J C Penney or a Wal-Mart will not. Ultimately, these large formats are the drivers of growth and such a growth will directly or indirectly help all sections, including the small and medium sectors. We have made a mistake by opposing FDI in multi brand retail,” he adds.
He foresees the apparel industry maturing into a highly fashion driven, consumption focused, and employment generating industry by 2020. “I see Tier II and III cities completely switching over to the ready to wear concepts; western wear being worn across a much wider strata of society; a return of pride in wearing ethnic clothing; and fashion playing a much larger role in ethnic wear,” Mehta opines.