We’re pretty sure you’ve scoured the internet for the best deals and the hottest outfits this past holiday season. One thing you might have noticed is the huge number of Indian fashion brands D2C appearing with each passing month.
So, this week, we take a look at the state of the D2C fashion market in India – arguably the largest of all D2C categories – and how it has changed over the past 18 months in the wake of the pandemic. Before that, here are two stories you should check out:
- IPO-linked Pepperfry Raised $ 40 Million to Expand Franchise Model with Focus on Modular Furniture and Mattress Segment
- The rise of D2C and an unprecedented boom in online shopping means India’s e-commerce market is expected to represent a $ 200 billion opportunity by 2026. For more, see our special feature.
Hot Indian fashion brands D2C
Arguably, the biggest advantage of the D2C model is the flexibility it offers companies to tap into the latest trends with new brands, products and private labels. And no category illustrates it better than fashion.
The D2C fashion segment is not only the leader in terms of potential, but also attracts the most interest from investors. It raised the highest funding of $ 756 million among any D2C segment in India (as of April 2021), and the boom has brought hundreds of brands to market.
️The market: Fashion has been a tough problem for startups to tackle due to the abundance of unorganized supply and the massive scale of incumbents, but discretionary spending on fashion is higher than most. categories D2C. Competition in the D2C fashion field has grown exponentially over the past two years. Besides the big brands and private labels of Myntra, Ajio and Amazon, the Indian market has several D2C startups in the segments of casual wear, Indian wear, loungewear and sportswear.
The Fashionistas: Through the combination of an evolved consumer base, greater exposure to fashion trends such as sustainability and conscious design, and a penchant for experiments, we have an explosion of D2C fashion brands. .
These include Bewakoof, StyleCracker, Chumbak, Azani, Anouk, Fable Street, The Souled Store, Wrogn, FabAlley, Zivame, Clovia, Damench, XYXX, Pretty Secrets, Almo Man, Bombay Shirt Company, Andamen among others. And with each passing week and month, more and more brands are joining the race, especially as the fashion business becomes social and creates new models.
Unlike 2020, where there was too much uncertainty about consumer spending over the holiday season, brands are more confident about 2021 and have rolled out big campaigns to attract consumers. New markets such as CRED have also emerged to join Ajio and Myntra, with more emphasis on D2C brands. Bewakoof, for example, allocated 15% of its total marketing budget in 2021 for the October-December quarter to boost sales.
Fashion becomes social: With so many brands competing in the market and new brands every two months, startups have sought to stand out in the way they sell.
From AR and VR to live or social commerce, D2C brands have sought to stand out with a range of strategies, and this has evolved along with the wider internet ecosystem. But what matters most is the rapid and efficient implementation of such solutions, for the sake of personalization.
Bewakoof, FabAlley, and others are leveraging AI-powered product development and recommendation engines to create new designs that best meet customer needs. Building a community is another major facet of the fashion business, which is evident in the large number of Instagram followers for these brands.
“Shopping has always been a social activity. When we think of shopping, we think of going out with family and friends and having a good time. So, digital native brands need to make group purchasing compete with the offline experience, ”said Bewakoof Founder and CEO Prabhkiran Singh.
Omnichannel questions: When it comes to fashion, how you sell is also guided by what you sell. Today, omnichannel (retail + marketplace + native) is the preferred mode of most brands. This makes sense because it lowers the cost of acquiring customers and increases the reach of those brands.
For example, in the underwear and lingerie segment, omnichannel has long been the way to go, as physical stores were an important point of contact for consumers. But as online marketplaces expand their reach and target costumes in Tier 2/3/4 towns, Zivame, Clovia, Damensch, and others have seen their addressable base grow rapidly.
??The big question: Will omnichannel remain the main go-to-market strategy in 2022?
Analysts believe the huge pressure on the retail channel in 2020 will lead to increased spending to online channels and reuse of retail assets for fulfillment and warehousing. Brands that have invested heavily in retail may need to shed their reliance on this channel in the future.
Beyond clothes: While apparel and apparel are the biggest sub-segments of fashion, the real potential for D2C brands to disrupt this space is vast when we include the larger world of accessories, eyewear, footwear and the like. Here is an overview of the vast market and D2C fashion players in India.
D2C Discovery: Awshad ☘️
Amazonian India is now making headlines for alleged sales of marijuana, but India’s connection to cannabis dates back to 2000 BCE and to Vedic texts. It is therefore not surprising that hemp startups like Awshad revive the practice of cannabis pills, oils, edibles and tinctures.
The Delhi-based startup is one of a host of startups looking to introduce cannabis and hemp products to the Indian market.
The opportunity: The startup is one of a dozen companies in India looking to carve out a niche in the medicinal cannabis segment.
In 2019, India was the second largest exporter of cannabis oils with $ 320.8 million (11.1% share of world exports) in turnover. The recent high profile controversies surrounding recreational marijuana use have reignited the debate on decriminalizing personal marijuana use, which would give the industry a boost.
Products : Awshad develops vegan and gluten-free full spectrum CBD products in the form of tinctures or oils for pain management and the treatment of lifestyle disorders such as stress, anxiety, sleep disorders, l epilepsy, among others.
The start-up started with a full-spectrum ‘Vijaya Oil’ in the form of oral tinctures, which can be purchased on prescription from Awshad’s partner physicians. In addition, its products are certified in the United States and licensed from the Indian Department of Ayush.
What follows: After launching its pet care product, Awshad is currently developing a line of CBD topical application products such as pain-relieving oils and balms, muscle and joint pain balms, which will be launched as of today. ‘here next month.
To note: Cannabis use is banned in India, but the commercial cultivation of hemp and cannabis and the consumption of specific cannabis-derived ingredients for medicinal purposes is legal in some states such as Odisha, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and others.
One week left for the biggest D2C and e-commerce conference in India
Ready to meet India’s fastest growing D2C brands at the D2C Summit next week? More than 5000 participants have registered and you can join them too. Register now and make the most of the D2C rush in India!
Buzz D2C this week
- Join the 10club! Thrasio-style platform acquired gardening startups Kraftseeds, Gate Garden and Kriti Kalash to launch its ‘Home’ category
- Purple patch! Beauty Market Raises Additional $ 49 Million Following Its $ 75 Million Fundraiser Last Month
- UpScalio is rolling! The roll-up platform marks its fourth acquisition with home appliance startup Hestia
- Biryani Boom! Cloud kitchen brand Biryani By Kilo raised $ 35 million to expand in India and internationally
- Growth spurt ! Home gardening startup Ugaoo increased INR 15 Cr in its pre-series A cycle to expand in India and launch new products
- Butter! Join Ventures plans to invest $ 7 million in ‘indulgent’ food brand Masqa
- Caffeine buzz: Delhi-based Sleepy Owl Coffee Raised $ 6.5 Million in Series A to Deepen Retail Presence
Join us next week for a new look at India’s D2C rush and the latest developments!