Afsar Zaidi, Co-Founder, HRX believes “fitness should be made available to everyone in the country.” According to him, Indian sportswear brands have the potential to supersede their international counterparts if they increase their presence in organised retail, and improve their marketing and sales strategies. HRX recently launched its men’s A/W 18 range known as Retroactive. “This range includes a lot of solids, mélanges, stripes and ombre treatment. It also offers retro designs and cuts with bold and bright stripes and prints,” notes Zaidi. “We are also adding specialised collections for yoga, training and running, etc. Sports bras and performance are the key products we are focusing on,” he adds. For men, the brand offers tracks, tees, joggers, hoodies, etc.
Today, clothing spells comfort and chic. Jeans and trainers have replaced dress pants and brogues driving the growth of the athleisure industry. Active wear includes clothes that can be worn from studio to street. These clothes are meant for exercise, live-in and even move about in. “In contrast, performance wear are clothes that are particularly designed for the purpose of sports. These have special in built features or technology aids that help an athlete or player improve his/her performance in the sport,” states Zaidi.
Growing awareness leads to growth
Indian activewear industry is fast proliferating due to growing health and wellness awareness in India. The increase in number of sporting clubs, increased interest in sporting activities like football, basketball, tennis, badminton and cricket alongwith a rise in disposal income and a growing inclination towards fitness is also spurring the growth of this industry. “The industry, currently estimated at a Rs 8,500 crore, is expected to grow at 12 per cent CAGR and touch expected sales of Rs 54,000 crores by 2020,” adds Zaidi. Top metros are contributing the most to this growth. However, other cities like Lucknow, Jaipur, Indore, Ludhiana etc, are also growing.
Exploring new avenues
HRX has several new categories in the offing. “Having launched eyewear last season, we plan to launch innerwear/loungewear. Besides, we also plan to add new partnerships to our current portfolio.” Around 65 per cent of HRX sales are likely to be driven by men, while the remaining 35 per cent will be generated by women. However, the brand expects sales from women’s category to increase to 45 per cent this year.