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Luxury brands gaining traction in non-metro areas: Reliance paper

BL Mumbai Bureau | | Updated on: May 21, 2022

2 out of 3 affluent residents shopped for luxury products online for the first time during Covid-19 restrictions

Over 65 per cent of non-metro residents buy products of luxury brands on a regular basis compared with 53 per cent residents in metros, according to the Atlas of Affluence (AOA) 2022 white paper, released by The Voice of Fashion (TVOF), a division of Reliance Brands Limited.

As per the white paper, 2 out of 3 affluent residents shopped for luxury products online for the first time during Covid-19 restrictions.

AOA 2022 is the first such wide and deep white paper from India that dissects consumer behaviour studied through the prism of luxury. The white paper was launched in Mumbai on Friday.

According to RBL data (which manages and sells more than 35 luxury and bridge to luxury brands in India), online sales for luxury brands doubled between 2021 and 2022. For RBL’s bridge-to-luxury brands, online sales increased from 20 per cent in 2021 to 29 per cent in 2022.

With this first edition, the Atlas of Affluence is set to become an annual feature. Besides a yearly study examined from various vantage points, AOA will evolve as a series of market related deep dives to appear periodically. With the pie of cuisine-led luxury only growing bigger, in its next, sub-category volume later this year, The Atlas of Affluence will trace India’s Eat Map.

“In finance and business studies, affluence is about assets compared to liabilities. But for an evolved luxury market—which includes aesthetic finesse, awareness, aspiration, affordability and distinction as well as trend-defining choices—affluence brings a new set of affirmations. It is a combination of wealth, assets and high disposable incomes, with socio-cultural awareness, self-knowledge, and a response-able outlook. This comes out clearly in this white paper as the rise of the individual,” says Shefalee Vasudev, Editor, The Voice of Fashion.

Comparative matrix

A collective reflection on what affluence means in India spiked during the two years of the pandemic. Charting the post-pandemic market and the clearly altered consumer mindset through a specially commissioned study across six cities and markets of India, AOA 2022 has been published as a book with exclusively commissioned artworks. This study uses the time graph of “pre-pandemic” and “post-pandemic” months to specify a comparative matrix. It also helps debunk long-held ideas about what affluence and luxury have meant to Indians.

The study was formulated over the last several months through scientifically designed consumer research to understand difference between buyers in metros and non-metros , brands consumed and behavioural ideas behind consumption. The other sections of this white paper move beyond luxury as a product to explore granularities of affluence.

As the largest luxury operator in the country, Reliance Brands Limited (RBL) also strengthened the report by providing significant consumer insights. An RBL spokesperson said, “Reliance Brands is happy to support the creation of the Atlas of Affluence, which will become the definitive document for understanding the luxury market in India, not just for businesses already operating in this sector but for global businesses looking to invest in the India story. This is the largest exercise ever to decode the affluent consumer across various consumption categories and this will help build our own strategic views as we continue to expand in the luxury sector.”

The study was formulated over the last several months through scientifically designed consumer research to understand metro and non-metro differences among buyers, brands and behavioural ideas behind consumption. The other sections of this white paper move beyond luxury as a product to explore granularities of affluence.

Published on May 21, 2022
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