Ag Voice | Sports Apparel Market in India
Sports in India, serves to be a part of one’s daily life as well as an element of entertainment to a huge populace of India. Several sportsmen and teams in India as well as international have made their mark on their fans. This iconic status developed has created masses to follow them. Though in India, Cricket ranks the top of the list and is followed as a religion, other sports are growing steadily.
Apart from cricket, consumers are now shifting their focus to other sports like football; kabaddi which has gained a huge popularity post to Pro-Kabaddi league, khali acquired a remarkable fame in wrestling (WWE). Recently, we have seen a humungous support for Manchester United and FIFA in India and a growing craze for football clubs.
Licensing and merchandising is seen to be one of the most powerful contemporary forms of marketing and brand extension available to brand owners today and is being used in ever increasingly refined ways. In this process, a brand can leverage to the most via creating and reinforcing awareness. With retailers and sports teams climbing the merchandising fad, fans can now offer full support to their favourite teams and sports personalities. A concept of sports merchandise has gained swift buck.
With a population base of over 1 billion with ever changing consumer preferences, India is expected to witness a massive growth in the sports apparel industry. Changing lifestyle of the young generation and the rapid response of adaption to new trends with greater disposable income, people have become more conscious and are fascinated towards their ideals thereby resulting in greater spending on sports apparels. Owing to this ever-changing phenomenon among of tastes and preferences among the younger generation, there are imminent brands that have strongly registered their presence in India.
The sales for sports merchandise is on a high and selling very fast. In spite of the high price factor, fans are not backing out from making the purchases to show their support. The jerseys range between Rs 1299 – Rs 2499 price range. Retailers have realized that potential sports have to entice buyers and are therefore catching up fast on the concept. Customizing is another factor that has further led to the increase in the number of sales of jerseys as you can now get the number and name of your favourite player on your jerseys.
Other factors that supported the growth of sports apparel industry in India, includes low cost, variety and abundance of raw material, quality-consciousness and back up, and R&D facilities. The streamlining and revolution in the sportswear industry from unorganized sector to the professionally organized sector is also working in favor of India.
The line between sports apparel and fashion apparel will become increasingly blurred, encouraging more alliance between the sporting and fashion industries. Innovation in fabrics will influence the market, with consumers looking for functions such as roughness reduction, lightness, stretch, water resistance and temperature regulation. The ride for the sports merchandise industry seems to be extensive yet smooth. With a few considerations, the industry is set to move to greater heights. By : Animesh Maheshwari, Vice President, RIOT retail venture of Suditi Industries Ltd