Mumbai: Durable family travel solutions company American Tourister aims to become the number one luggage brand by 2014 by increasing its presence to 300 showrooms pan-India, especially in tier II and III cities.
“We are expecting 85% brand growth this fiscal (calender year) and to become the number one brand by 2014 in the organised mid to premium luggage segment,” Samsonite south asia group marketing director Sudip Ghose said in Mumbai.
In terms of volumes, he said the company is already on the verge of becoming the market leader.
He said looking at current growth, the company is doubling its volumes every two years and this trend is likely to continue for the next five years.
American Tourister is a brand of Samsonite Corporations and was introduced in India six years ago with a price range starting from Rs1,700 up to Rs6,000.
“The concept of luggage has now changed and people are looking at buying good quality products that is durable, which is resulting into the shrinking of the unorganised sector,” he said.
American Tourister, which has 80 company-owned showrooms and 150 franchises, plans to open another 70 new stores, taking the total to 300 by the end of this year, he said.
“We already have a considerable presence in the metros and bigger towns. Now our main focus will be the tier II and III cities, where people have money to buy good quality luggage and aspire to own the American Tourister,” he said.
The company plans to invest Rs100 crore to fund this expansion, he said.
The total luggage market in the country is worth Rs3,000 crore, out of which up to Rs1,700 crore is the organised segment.
“We enjoy about 29.4% of the organised luggage market, which comprises Rs500 crore,” Ghose said.
Samsonite Corporations has a hard-side suitcases factory at Nasik, in Maharashtra, which has the capacity to produce one lakh units per month and caters to the whole of Asia and parts of Europe.
“Hard side suitcase is 20% of our total business, that includes both our brands -- American Tourister and Samsonite,” he said.
All the soft side luggage is imported from the company’s Chinese factories, he said.
The company also has its own factories in Argentina, Belgium, Chile and China and three factories in China that manufacture exclusively for Samsonite Corporations