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Balenciaga enters the Indian market

After Burberry, Jimmy Choo and Valentino, it is now the turn of Balenciaga to sign an agreement with Reliance Brands Limited, the leader of the Indian luxury goods sector, in order to launch itself on the Indian market.

Eva Morletto

By Eva Morletto09 août 2022

Luxury brands are increasingly entering the Indian market, where the middle class is becoming more affluent and therefore more interested in luxury products (Balenciaga)

It is Balenciaga's turn to enter the Indian market. After the arrival of Valentino, this time it is a question of developing one of the flagships of the Kering empire in India. Reliance Brands Limited, the retail brand licensing arm of Reliance Industries Ltd, the sector leader in India, has signed an agreement with Balenciaga after a series of contracts with other western luxury brands such as Burberry and Jimmy Choo.

The company wants to expand its portfolio of brands to meet the demands of the new Indian middle class, increasingly attentive to fashion identified as "a form of creative expression" in the words of the Indian group's chairman Darshan Mehta, when announcing the new partnership to the press.

In recent years, Balenciaga has been able to renew itself and create a new image, thanks in part to the work of designer Demna Gvasalia, famous for his charisma and his provocative, revolutionary and eclectic style. Who better than the label to represent fashion as a means of artistic expression and a symbol of creative energy?

Reliance Brands Limited executives are excited about the partnership. The Indian group will have exclusive distribution rights for the brand in the Asian country. The relationship between Kering and India has been quite close for years. It is in this country that a large part of the embroidery produced for the collections of the group's brands comes from.

In 2020, in order to improve the traceability of its productions, Kering inaugurated its own embroidery workshop in the country, with the objective of reinternalising part of the production process and limiting outsourcing. The latter practice, which consists of entrusting part of the production to external craft companies, had made traceability more difficult in the past. The workshop, which is directly dependent on the parent company, makes it possible to closely monitor the progress of the embroidery production phases and the commercial strategies adopted, in order to improve them and guarantee workers adequate protection and correct wage conditions.

The group headed by François-Henri Pinault is closely monitoring the development of the luxury market in the Indian subcontinent. It is indeed one of the markets where the growth in sales of premium products is increasing rapidly and steadily. The middle class working in the tertiary sector in the country's metropolises is becoming progressively more affluent and consequently more interested in high-end products: a trend that Kering could not ignore.  

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