In India, Thinking Beyond the Cashmere Crowd

Aer, 34th Floor Lounge at the Four Seasons, Mumbai | Source: Four Seasons

Today we are delighted to bring you the first installment of India Inc., a regular column on the Indian luxury market by Bandana Tewari. MUMBAI, India — Atop Aer, a tony roof-top bar at the Four Seasons with a sweeping panorama of slumdog-Mumbai — a circuitous medley of high-rises and slums alike — the time at which you arrive for a “Worli Sunset,” a vodka and mandarin cocktail named after the neighbourhood, says a lot about you.

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Global Briefing | Is FDI Reform the Answer to the India Problem?

Hermès Flagship, Mumbai | Source:

In our second article this week focused on India, we investigate the barriers impeding the growth of India’s international luxury goods market, which go beyond the recently lifted restrictions on foreign direct investment. MUMBAI, India — “By the end of 2015, emerging markets should account for more than 50 percent of luxury sales,” Antoine Colonna, a luxury analyst at the asset manager Carmignac Gestion in Paris, told The

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The Creative Class | Bandana Tewari, Editor

Bandana Tewari | Source: Johan Sandberg

PARIS, France — Bandana Tewari has made a name for herself as one of the fashion industry’s smartest commentators. As fashion features director of Vogue India, she has quickly become the go-to source for anyone who wants to learn about the country’s rapidly evolving luxury market. Recently, she was named to Industrie magazine’s Fashion Media A-list, alongside other leading fashion commentators including Cathy

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The Fashion Trail | Modern Mumbai and Lakmé Fashion Week

Bandana Tewari at Lakmé Fashion Week | Photo: BoF

MUMBAI, India – From the minute I landed in Bombay—as everyone here still calls it—the rapidly shifting nature of contemporary India was apparent. Instead of waiting in agonisingly long queues at the airport, I breezed through immigration, customs and bag collection in only 45 minutes. That’s faster than one can make it through most terminals at Heathrow or JFK these days. Outside the airport, cranes building a new terminal towered

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In India, Luxury Brands Need Localised Strategies

DLF Emporio, New Delhi | Source: DLF

MUMBAI, India — According to Forbes, India has the fastest-growing population of millionaires in the world. But for Western luxury brands operating in the country, grabbing a piece of the market has proven more difficult than anticipated and many are in the process of re-conceiving their India strategies. Part of the problem is that Western luxury brands don’t seem to understand Indian consumers. When they first entered

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littleshilpa | Shilpa Chavan’s Mumbai Millinery

Piece from the Battle Royale collection by Littleshilpa

We’re wrapping up BoF India Fashion Week with the wonderful story of Shilpa Chavan, a Bombay milliner whose sophisticated urban headdresses have caught the attention of and ended up at the AlSabah Art & Design Gallery in Kuwait. MUMBAI, India — There’s no doubt that India is a treasure chest of craft and creativity. Indeed, these were the two words most heard at the recently concluded IHT conference in New

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The Modern Indian Male | A New Sartorial Elite

GQ India - Premier issue, courtesy of GQ

On Day Three of India Fashion Week on BoF, we take a look at the burgeoning menswear market, which is increasing in size, but also sophistication. MUMBAI, India — We are witnessing a seismic shift in the menswear industry in India today. Indeed, the Indian man has finally come into his own. In a sartorial sense, he knows what he wants, isn’t afraid to experiment, and is willing to spend on the best. He has a deeper

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Sustainable Luxury | An issue not to be ignored

[caption id="attachment_3333" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="Dries Van Noten, courtesy of IHT"][/caption] It's day two of the BoF India Fashion Week and today we turn our attention to Sustainable Luxury, the theme of the most recent IHT Luxury Conference, held this year in India, home of age-old craftsmanship and artisanale traditions. NEW DELHI, India — "What does an economic collapse and a terrorist attack have to do with sustainable luxury?" Everything, strategist and author Jem Bendell suggested as he addressed the attendees of the International Herald Tribune's annual conference on Luxury held last week. The event was re-scheduled from December of last year, due to the 26/11 attacks on Mumbai. The topic for this year's conference was Sustainable Luxury—a phrase whose meaning…

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India Fashion Week(s) | Three’s a Crowd?

Prepartion for Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week, courtesy of PR Pundit

This week on The Business of Fashion we welcome several guest contributors to give us the scoop on recent fashion weeks, the IHT conference and local market trends in India. We’re calling it our own India Fashion Week, but as you’ll see, that might be the last thing India needs. NEW DELHI, India — Bollywood, Cricket and Fashion. Everyday these three topics bring to life the popular culture pages of India’s leading

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CEO Talk | Priya Kishore, Founder and Creative Director, Bombay Electric

Priya Kishore, a beacon for Bombay's new creative elite, courtesy of Bombay Electric

NEW DELHI, India – When Priya Kishore and Bombay Electric hit Mumbai a few years ago, Mumbaikars didn’t know what was coming. No sooner had Kishore arrived than she became a beacon for Bombay’s new creative elite – one with a rightful place on the world stage. A friend while she lived in London, Priya always had this wonderful creative streak, dressed in quirky clothes and popping colours. No wonder Mumbai

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The Brit Pack | Published in Vogue India

LONDON, United Kingdom and MUMBAI, India - Over dinner at Milan Fashion Week last February, I got to talking to Bandana Tewari, Fashion Features Director of Vogue India, about the renewed energy in London fashion. Naturally, her first question was what Indian designers were doing to contribute to the London scene, particularly as India continues to emerge for a centre for world-class design. The result of our conversation is this Vogue India article on Indian designers based in London. While writing the piece, I got to know three Indian designers with three amazing stories, each of which started in India and subsequently took them all over the world, until they finally ended up in London. Between them, Ashish Gupta, Saloni…

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Luxury in India | Published in the Financial Times

MUMBAI, India and SHANGHAI, China - If it's the Monday of Milan Fashion Week, it also means that the Financial Times has published its regular supplement on The Business of Fashion. We're a couple of days late, so in case you missed it, here is a link to a PDF of the entire supplement available on the FT's Partnership Publishing site. Amongst the best reads are a fascinating article by Josh Sims featuring a brand that I have come to know well in recent times, Clemens en August. Founder Alexander Brenninkmeijer ably describes the counter-intuitive, but successful business model that underpins this innovative company. Another article, on A Bathing Ape, asserts that the Japanese streetwear company has a 98% sell-through…

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India’s slow Internet march

One look at the current advertising campaign for Hermès, and it's clear that India is on the radar screen of Western luxury brands. But this is not a new phenomenon. At the recent Walpole Seminar on China & India, Dr. Amin Jaffer, International Director of Asian Art at Christie’s, described the long relationship that India has had with European luxury brands, dating back to the late 1800's. Today, however, things aren't as straightforward. Other Walpole seminar participants like Mohan Murjani (of the Murjani Group - partners to Jimmy Choo, Gucci and Bottega Veneta in India) also revealed that new luxury entrants in India are up against strong domestic players, labyrinthine bureaucracy, and inconsistent infrastructure. Break-even will take longer than some…

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