Over the years, the Indian kidswear apparel market has been mainly dominated by unorganised and local players and that’s perhaps the reason of it being remained largely untapped. However, with the advent of internet that resulted in Westernwear influencing kidswear styles, the organised and branded as well as designer labels are now looking up. The last two years has seen a lot of brands venturing into the kidswear segment. Not only this, kids too have become aware of the global brands and got conscious of their styles and looks. The complex kids wear segment in India has been witnessing a boom as parents and children becoming more conscious about kids fashion and trends. Perhaps that’s the reason that the kidswear apparel industry is expected to touch Rs 1,600 billion by 2021, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12 per cent between 2016-21. According to data released by Deloitte India, the Indian kidswear market was estimated at Rs 900-950 billion in 2016, up from Rs 790 billion in 2015.
The market, worth Rs 59,520 crore in 2015, accounted for 20 per cent of the total apparel market in India. It is expected that kidswear will significantly surpass the growth of menswear and womenswear by growing at a CAGR of 10.8 per cent to reach Rs 1,65,120 crore in 2025.
Perhaps looking at the prospective growing market, textile maker Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd has plans to develop kidswear as a separate business vertical. The idea is to double its business over the next five years. As a step in this direction, the company, which sells foreign labels like Tommy Hilfiger, Nautica, GAP and Aeropostale, is getting ready to open exclusive kidswear outlets which will sell apparel, footwear and accessories from Arvind’s in-house brands, starting with Bengaluru and Delhi. At present, the company retails kidswear products through standalone brand stores.
Arvind’s kids’ portfolio is currently estimated at Rs 200 crore — Rs 100 crore of which is US Polo. The company is the India licensing partner of The Children’s Place, America’s largest specialty retailer of children’s apparel and accessories. With the new offering, Arvind will cater to infants (0-1 years), toddlers (1-3 years) and children (4-14 years). The multi-brand kidswear format will be led by three power brands—US Polo Association, The Children’s Place and Flying Machine.
Pantaloons, a part of Aditya Birla Fashion Retail Ltd, ventured into children’s wear and launched Pantaloons Kids in 2016. Biba Apparels Ltd, women’s ethnic wear brand, opened standalone stores that exclusively sell children’s apparel. In January 2016, Mahindra Retail added children’s clothing, gifts and accessories range of US-based Carter’s Inc to its chain of BabyOye stores across the country.
Also launched recently is 612 Wonder Store, a gesture controlled, kid-friendly kiosk which enables trials of over 300-plus products with a flip of a hand and the option for placing an order. Conceived and created by first generation entrepreneur, Manu Indrayan, 612 League is an ‘Imagined in India, International in Outlook’ brand focussing on pre-teen (tween) children. The brand caters specifically to children in the age group of six months to 12 years with unique and differentiated wardrobe solutions