Apparel and footwear companies are bullish on the festival season sales this year after two years of pandemic. On the back of positive consumer sentiment, most companies are hoping to garner double-digit sales growth during the season, despite inflationary pressures.

Abhishek Ganguly, Managing Director of PUMA India & Southeast Asia, said there is positive sentiment in the fashion industry across both offline and online channels. “The industry expects to see strong growth over last year . During last year’s festival season, the country was still coming out of the effects of the painful second pandemic wave. This festival season initial indications are that there is positive consumer sentiment and they do want to spend and one can see that across both offline and online channels.”

While malls and stores are witnessing strong footfalls, online sales across e-commerce platforms that kickstarted last weekend are eliciting good response from consumers, a senior executive said.

Sunil Kataria, CEO – Lifestyle Business, Raymond Ltd, said the company expects to garner a strong double-digit growth over the last festival season in the branded apparel segment. “Since this festival season will be celebrated with full fervour and freedom after a gap of two years , we expect consumers to indulge in celebrations and spend for the same.. irrespective of the inflation. However, sustained inflation and its impact on sentiment has to be watched out,” he added.

Lalit Agarwal, MD, V-Mart, added that the company expects the festival season to be better than last year in terms of sales growth.

Harkirat Singh, Managing Director, Aero Club, known for brands such as Woodland, said the company is expecting to garner 20-25 per cent growth this festival season. “ Consumers did not spend much during the pandemic as they stayed and worked from home. This is the first festival season where it is back to normalcy and consumers are looking at avenues to indulge and spend,” he said.

Senior executives said that some consumers are expected to seek value for money options and the impact of inflationary pressures could be visible more at the entry level segment than in the mid to premium segments.

Emerging D2C brands too are betting big on the festival season. Atul Chachra, Vice-President Retail, FabAlley&Indya, said the company is expecting to see 75 per cent growth over last year.

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