The ‘Make in India’ and ‘Startup India’ movements of the government have been an inspiration to many in the fashion sector, from textile and fabric manufacturers to entrepreneurs serving both the domestic and international markets. One of the biggest engines of growth in the country today, ‘Make in India’ has resonated particularly well with home-grown denim brands. The Indian denim market, in recent times, has witnessed massive penetration and amassed huge denim-loving crowds who now have the chance to own a comfortable, affordable and well-fitted pair of jeans without having to run pillar to post only to end up buying an expensive piece of clothing. In fact, one study suggests that the Indian denim jeans market is growing faster than its global growth rate. Various market studies also indicate that the Indian domestic market for denim has consistently maintained an average CAGR of 8-9% over a few years and is expected to reach $12.27 billion by 2028.
What also works in their favour is that the denim manufacturing capacity of the country is still partially under-utilised. But, this huge opportunity in the once-considered sunrise industry has also led to the proliferation of denim manufacturing mills, thus leading to over-production of the fabric. This under-utilised production has also been caused due to the fall in demand for denim post COVID-19 as consumers began shifting to skinfriendly, loose fabrics available at a fraction of the cost and were in vogue. But, as is the cyclical nature of fashion, denim is making a comeback and coupled with the avidity of Western countries to import denim from India’s manufacturing mills, there seems to be a silver lining in the dark cloud.
Another sector that has benefitted greatly from the encouragement given by the government to home-grown brands and a startupfriendly economy is value fashion. Access to an inexpensive internet in the remotest corners of the country has made fashion enthusiasts in Tier-II & III cities & towns aspire to don pieces they see trending in Tier-I and metros. The value fashion market in Tier-II and III cities, a solution to the consumer’s plight, is thus considered one of the biggest new opportunities in India not only for the e-tailer but also for those brands that are predominantly brick-and-mortar retailers. India’s fashion growth story is thus turning a new leaf as we speak. We hope that fashion brands and retailers, both domestic & international, ofline & online, leap at the opportunity!
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