French luxury brand Cifonelli plans India launch
New Delhi: A 137-year-old French luxury menswear brand, known to have dressed yesteryear’s iconic actors like Cary Grant, Charlton Heston and Lino Ventura, is making inroads in India. The bespoke brand Cifonelli, in partnership with a Mumbai-based luxury retailer Vault Luxury, is planning to open a “lounge” in Mumbai in 2018, in addition to a few trunk shows in Delhi and Mumbai.
Launched in 1880, Cifonelli has its outlets in just four countries but through its trunk shows, it has an “international presence”. The company also holds fashion shows at the Paris and Milan fashion weeks every year.
“Since 1880 we have been at the vanguard of the luxury tailoring; each garment is perceived as a true work of art. The luxury sector has a great strength and in the recent years sales of luxury goods have grown faster in this country than anywhere else in the world. The customer profile in India is someone who is demanding and knowledgeable about the product,” said Erwan Camphuis, chief executive officer at Cifonelli, in an e-mailed response to questions on the company’s plans.
Camphuis added that the company will further expand its operations in India, depending on the success of its outlet in Mumbai. “The main objective is continuing offering a superb personalized service and an exquisite treatment. We estimate that India can grow up to a 10% contribution to our global sales. India has a strong and increasing sale of luxury products,” he said, refusing to disclose the overall revenue of the company.
Going forward, the company is planning to expand in London and Singapore in 2018. Cifonelli had launched its first ready-to-wear collection (designed by clothing designer and Cifonelli’s creative director John Vizzone) in 2014.
“The made-to-measure and ready-to-wear offering will thrill the connoisseurs of luxury and fine clothing in India. Cifonelli, with 137 years of expertise in superlative tailoring, brings in the perfect mix of English elegance, Italian style and Parisian chic. Customers can avail Cifonelli’s services by way of personal appointments, and by invitation to trunk shows,” said Shirrin Faarooq, founder at Vault Luxury, in a statement.
According to data from consulting firm KPMG, men’s formal apparel market in India was estimated at Rs445 billion in 2015 and is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10% between 2015 and 2025, However, the growth in formal apparel is expected to be relatively slow, compared with casual (which is poised to grow at 20% CAGR over the same period).
“Luxury market in India is limited. Having said that, this brand is offering a differentiated service. There is a market around it. Indians appreciate made-to-measure products. I think the brand’s expectations from the Indian market will be tempered and limited,” said Ankur Bisen, senior vice-president, retail and consumer, at retail consultancy Technopak Advisors.
Increasing disposable income, brand consciousness and internet penetration are further expected to fuel growth in the overall apparel sector, according to KPMG.