Home / Industry / Retail /  Luxury brands unveil India collections

NEW DELHI : International luxury brands have stepped up their game to offer a niche portfolio of India-specific collections to woo the uber-rich, said experts.

The increasing importance of the booming luxury market in India for global brands like Louis Vuitton, Franck Muller, Emporio Armani, Bvlgari, AVI-8, Burberry, Versace Czapek, Realeza Cigars and jewellery brand Cartier, among others, is visible across categories.

Last week, the craze around Louis Vuitton’s limited edition capsule collection of footwear priced at 75,000-1.20 lakh, for the wedding season, offered a sneak peek into the mind of India’s fashion aficionado. To cash in on it, the company introduced a collection of fuchsia-coloured shoes to pay homage to Rajasthan’s royal family.

Pushpa Bector, executive director, DLF Retail and head of luxury and shopping malls, said the Indian market is ready for luxury brands to curate India-exclusive collections.

“India is now on the radar of global luxury brands. Designing collections isn’t as easy but they consider India a serious enough market to do this. It is an initiative to tap the Indian luxury market. After all, there is a huge diaspora around the world. We expect another 2-3 brands to launch India-first and India-only collections," she added.

Swiss luxury watchmaker Franck Muller launched 150 pieces of a first-of-its-kind limited edition watch collection for India. While 100 pieces of the watch are designed in steel and gold, the rest are part of a rose-gold edition.

Erol Baliyan, Franck Muller managing director for Middle East, Africa and India, said 75% of the products were booked even before the watches went live for sale, and were likely to sell out within the first couple of weeks, despite the price tag. The two offerings were priced at 11.7 lakh and 18.72 lakh respectively. In September, Franck Muller also renewed its contract with actor Ranveer Singh as its brand ambassador. “India is an inspirational country. We couldn’t have chosen a better year than its 75th year of independence to announce the first limited-edition timepieces. Etched with India’s map on the back of each case, the watches connect with the heart and soul of all who live here,“ Baliyan said.

Bespoke luxury brand Petroveta launched a 100% India-sourced vegan handbag. Each piece of this India-only collection is finished to client specifications.

Sting and Roar, too, upped its game with the India-made Oxford twin Himalaya cotton shirts starting at 2.5 lakh.

Raahuul Kapoor, founding partner, Luxury Ampersand Frolics, which offers consultancy services to luxury brands, and introduced a few brands to India, said: “Many of these special edition or capsule pieces may become collectibles and luxury brands want to showcase themselves as investable brands." The nouveau riche are spending more on luxury products, he added “Though it is not just a marketing exercise, brands have great margin on these, since most use their existing base products to craft the new product."

For the third year in a row, Italian eyewear conglomerate Luxottica, too, launched an India-exclusive festive, limited edition sunglass range for its brands Emporio Armani, Michael Kors and Versace. Its pilot project was done in 2020, for eyewear brands Emporio Armani and Michael Kors. For this year's special edition products, Suvashish Banerjee, senior brand business manager, luxury & premium portfolio, Luxottica India Eyewear Pvt Ltd said only about 10% of the products are now left to be sold. For the sunglasses it launched for Versace, the styles have “Celebrating India" imprinted within the right temple.

"New age entrepreneurs and gen-z are splurging on everything, and all these global luxury brands are now understanding that India is a market that they want to be seen in. They are looking at India the way they looked at China 5-10 years ago and they understand this market has a good potential to grow with a big middle class," said Banerjee.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Varuni Khosla

Varuni Khosla is a journalist with close to 14 years of experience in writing business news stories for mainstream newspaper companies like Mint and The Economic Times. She reports and writes on luxury and lifestyle brands, hospitality and tourism news, the business of sports, the business of advertising and marketing and alcohol brands.
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