More than global 300 brands are expected to open stores in India in two years. A rapidly growing middle class, an increasingly powerful manufacturing sector and strong economic fundamentals make the country too important for international brands to ignore. The country is being propelled by strong macroeconomic tailwinds and is predicted to grow at eight per cent a year till 2022.
The Indian middle class is forecasted to grow at 19.4 per cent a year, outpacing China, Mexico and Brazil. As a result, India is set to move from being an increasingly important sourcing hub to being one of the most attractive consumer markets outside the western world. The country’s apparel market is expected to be the sixth largest in the world by 2022. The aggregate income of the addressable population is expected to triple between now and 2025. Given the strong economic growth, scale and rising tech-savviness brands see India as the next big global opportunity in fashion and apparel.
However, there are challenges. The apparel business is still largely unorganised with formal retail accounting for just 35 per cent of sales. Its share is likely to reach around 45 per cent by 2025, still a relatively low proportion. Other structural challenges include inequality, infrastructure and market fragmentation.