His stable’s shoes come with the slogan “It’s Wow!” It’s Khadim. The new brand campaign aimed at the festival market and featuring popular YouTubers Kiran Dutta (The Bong Guy) and Indrani Biswas (Wonder Munna) which Kolkata’s second largest shoe brand recently rolled out, highlights the offers brand trinity in-store refreshed. experience, affordable prices and a range of trendy products – together that “Wow” factor. Simultaneously, Khadim also launched its festive range under the sub-brands – British Walkers, Lazard, Turk, Sharon, Cleo, Softtouch, PRO, Bonito, Adriana, targeting the younger generation in particular and the whole family in general.
Speaking exclusively to Bizz Buzz, Namrata Ashok Chotrani, CEO, Khadim India Ltd takes a long look at the far-reaching issues facing the footwear industry, Khadim’s growth story and how they plan to position Khadim, going forward
Which segment: men/women/children/girls – is growing fastest?
The women’s and children’s segments are growing at a faster pace. The growth of the women’s segment is driven by the increasing number of working women, resulting in high disposable income and demand for chic and fashionable products due to exposure to new fashion trends. And the children’s segment is boosted by the increase in the number of working parents, which leads to increased expenses for children. However, the male category remains dominant. In addition, over the past two years, the consumption of comfortable and casual sports shoes (Athleisure) has increased significantly for both men’s and women’s categories. The category has a lot of potential to grow further.
What is the fastest growing segment for Khadim? How fast are these different segments developing?
Khadim saw growth across all segments for its two business units. The company’s athleisure category has seen phenomenal growth due to the increase in physical activity performance by consumers. Additionally, there is a shift in customers’ buying behavior towards casual and fashionable shoes which we are aggressively focusing on.
Which of these different segments will be the company’s focus going forward?
Our constant market research has revealed that the demand for stylish and comfortable footwear has increased. As a result, we have restructured our product portfolio with an emphasis on premiumization while maintaining affordable pricing across all categories. Keeping in mind changes in consumer preferences, we would focus on athletic and leisure footwear in the retail and distribution business units.
How many outlets do you currently have? How many of them are owned by the company and how many are owned by franchisees?
Currently, Khadim India has 796 retail stores across India. Among them, 207 are COO (Company Owned Outlets) and another 589 are in association with franchise partners.
Thinking of expanding your business presence? Could you please elaborate on that – how many stores would you add, how many would be company owned and how many would be franchise owned?
In line with our plan, we are expanding our retail touchpoints. We would add approximately 70-80 stores each year across the country through a combination of company-owned outlets as well as franchise partnerships.
How much would you invest over the next 1-2 years for brand promotion and retail expansion? How did the rebrand help you and what was the trigger for the rebrand?
Our investments in brand promotion are focused on ROI driven campaigns. We would spend about 1.50-2% of our net sales on brand promotion.
In our effort to engage with new era consumers, we went through the rebranding exercise by incorporating a new logo in a bold red color with an energetic tagline “It’s WOW, It’s Khadim”. Our revamped logo looks sleeker in a vibrant red and white combination. To further strengthen our rebranding exercise, we onboarded Indian cricketer Shardul Thakur and launched a campaign with him earlier this year. In line with our brand slogan, to deliver a Wow experience to our consumers, we designed a trinity approach with a new line of fashionable products, a refreshed in-store experience while strengthening the affordability.
Do you export? If so, what would be the export volume? To which countries do you export? Are there any new geographies/markets you are considering?
We are open to exporting business deals as the opportunity arises. But our main objective is to meet domestic demand.
What percentage of your total turnover comes from institutional sales (school shoes, etc.)? Would you like to watch this segment with increasing thrust?
In FY22, we did not process any institutional sales. Going forward, we will continue to focus on our retail and distribution business.
The impact of the GST on the footwear industry?
We have passed on the increase in GST on the MRP of footwear up to Rs 1000, like all the other players in the industry. The increase in the GST has led to higher product prices.
How much of your sales come from e-commerce? In the future, by how much do you expect this percentage to increase?
E-commerce is a growing division for us. Currently 5% of our sales come from e-commerce and in the future we expect this to increase by 8-10%. With our vision of being an Omni-Channel brand, we are focused on improving our services. We have partnered with leading e-commerce platforms Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra to expand our product offerings while enhancing the reach of our own platform www.khadims.com.
How many brands/sub-brands do you have? Are you considering other brands under the Khadim umbrella?
Our two lines of business, retail and distribution, have separate sub-brands with the parent brand Khadim with multiple end users. In retail, we have the following sub-brands:
♦ British Walkers offers men’s clothing (formal shoes and premium leather sandals)
♦ Lazard offers men’s clothing (semi-formal and casual shoes/sandals, using premium leather and faux leather)
♦ Turk offers men’s clothing (top quality faux leather outdoor boots/sandals); Sharon is for women (fashionable yet functional premium faux leather sandals); Cleo is for women (light and fashionable sandals in premium leatherette)
♦ Softtouch offers clothing for men and women (closed and open shoes/sandals in soft leather and premium faux leather)
♦ PRO offers clothing for men and women (sports/activity sneakers/mesh/synthetic floating sandals/canvas uppers)
♦ Bonito offers Kidswear (a colorful range of shoes for toddlers and children)
♦ Adriana offers comfortable and fashionable shoes for tweens and teens
Our Distribution segment includes the following sub-brands:
♦ Dunford offers dress shoes for men
♦ Wash & Wear offers PVC shoes for men and women
♦ Fliers offers DIP & PU shoes for men and women
♦ FitNxt offers Athleisure sandals and shoes for men and women
♦ Kalypso – premium Hawaii & Chappals Manufacturing
♦ Pugo – children’s shoes
How do you position your brand in the market? Would you continue with this brand positioning in the future or would you consider a different positioning?
Khadim India, the second largest retail footwear brand in the country, has the largest presence in the East and is among the top three players in South India. It is one of the emerging brands in North and West India. The brand’s central proposition is affordable fashion for the whole family for all occasions. Going forward, we would like to continue with this affordable fashion footwear brand identity underpinned by our trinity offering of fashionable and fashionable footwear range, revitalized retail experience and strengthening affordability.