Opening up of the FDI in mono-brands in retail is going to be a boon for the international brands that are looking at entering India but what about the local brands? Are they going to survive? Flourish even?
Indians have traditionally held International Western brands in great regard and have always aspired to own the well-advertised and well-presented international brands. Indian brands usually got a second rate treatment and were often neglected, despite the fact that a lot of them delivered far greater value for money than the international brands.
This was clearly a time of import controls and limited availability of imported products. One can remember going to the back street markets in Mumbai to the dealers that sold grey products and buying brands of perfumes, shirts, electronics and the like. The limited availability of these brands and products certainly added to the allure and the attraction for these brands. Anyone can get a brand from the store in the city, but are you one of the few that have access to these dealers and are able to flaunt the latest brands?
This has changed drastically over the years, the easing of import controls, more Indians travelling abroad more frequently and more importantly ease of availability of these brands in India and this has taken away the aura around some of these brands. But does this naturally mean that the Indian brands are going to become popular? Will people look at quality, craftsmanship and the value for money vs. the aura?
As one segment, Indian designers in particular have been favored for traditional clothing and International designers for the western styled clothing. Is this going to change and are people going to see the Indian designers and their clothing for the quality and craftsmanship that they deserve? For Indian or Western clothing?
It's just the start, and as a famous bollywood movie dialogue picture to abhi baaki hai...