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Inexpensive French apparel company Kiabi aims to enter India

Affordable French apparel brand Kiabi, which is present in about 15 countries, is in talks to enter India market, three people aware of the development said.

Kiabi is owned by The Association Familiale Mulliez (AFM), the holding company of the Mulliez family, which also control Decathlon, Auchan supermarket and about a dozen other retail brands.

The global team of the company was in India recently to explore retail space and visited some of the premium malls of Delhi.

“The company had initiated the discussion to enter India market pre-pandemic but covid slowed down the process. They have now appointed a consultant to facilitate India entry,” said one of the person quoted above.

The brand is looking for large format stores in metro cities.

Kiabi did not respond to the email query. Experts said India’s consumption structure has been skewed in the past over a narrow base of richer consumers accounting for a large chunk of the overall market.

However, as the economy is broadening across many more cities and the impact is reaching further down the income ladder, the opportunity for value-formats and value-brands is expanding.

As the world’s second most-populated country, India is an attractive market for apparel brands, especially with youngsters increasingly embracing western-style clothing. According to a CBRE’s report, international brands such as Tim Hortons, Victoria’s Secret, and Uniqlo continued to expand during Jul-Dec ’22, despite global headwinds.



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