Companies

Male grooming brand Depot hopes to create a niche in India

Abhishek Law Kolkata | Updated on January 12, 2018 Published on January 12, 2018

Depot intends to clock a turnover of ₹3.5 crore in the first year of operations here (from September 2017 to August 2018) and is targeting a 50 per cent year-on-year growth for three years.“We intend to keep the offering as a luxury. So even salons with a large branch network are not something which we will prefer.”



With the men’s grooming market in India growing, Italian luxury brand Depot is eyeing a strong foothold in the segment.

Depot, a specialised male grooming brand, entered the country last year in September with Mumbai-based SSIZ International having the marketing and distribution rights (in India).

According to Rayed Merchant, Director, SSIZ International, Depot intends to clock a turnover of ₹3.5 crore in the first year of operations here (from September 2017 to August 2018) and is targeting a 50 per cent year-on-year growth for three years.

“The market in India is still immature and we hope to create a niche space for ourselves,” he told BusinessLine during an interview.

Growing market

Globally, Depot competes with the likes of specialised male grooming brands like the American Crew.

The male grooming segment – that includes hair conditioning and styling; shaving solutions and beard and moustache grooming offerings – is still at a nascent stage.

Compared to a $100-million business globally, the segment here is close to $10 million.

According to 6Wresearch, the Indian men grooming market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 15 per cent during 2017-23.

Over the last few years, fragrances and deodorants segment registered higher adoption across India, especially in tier-II and III cities.

In India, specialised male grooming products come from start-ups like ‘Ustraa’, ‘Beardo’, ‘The Man Company’.

Apart from these, the predominant players include FMCG and multinationals like Gillette (in shaving solutions); Emami (in the fairness cream and facewash categories); Garnier (in facewash); Marico’s Set Wet and HUL’s Brylcreem (in hair styling); Nivea (skin care); McEnroe and ITC (deodorants and fragrances). However, most of these continue to play in the mass, mass premium and premium segments.

Depot, on the other hand, is a premium luxury offering.

Niche positioning

As Merchant points out, Depot is currently sold via a B2B model that includes premium salon chains and through salons in hotels like JW Marriot, Westin and Taj.

It will, however, not be sold through mass channels like mom-and-pop stores or organised retails.

“We intend to keep the offering as a luxury. So even salons with a large branch network are not something which we will prefer,” he pointed out. However, the company is open to tie-ups with premium gyms for sale of offerings.

Depot is available in three cities – Delhi, Pune and Mumbai – with Bengaluru and Hyderabad expected to be added by January. Its second phase of expansion from March will see it adding cities such as Chennai and Kolkata.

“We are also planning to have an online store by mid-January,” Merchant added.

Published on January 12, 2018
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