The license-holder of Lacoste in India, the Sports and Leisure Apparel Limited, has recently announced that it is planning to make an investment of around $10 million in order to ramp up its presence in India over the next two years. The company is a Turner Morrison group company and the officials of the company have informed that they are now planning to have a number of 10 flagship stores in the country. They said that each of the stores would be having an area of about 4,000 sq ft and the company is also planning to launch 40-50 boutiques, having an area between 1,500-2,400 sq ft. Launching 10-15 corners of about 1,000 sq ft in area for each across the country is also within the plans of the company. The company is planning to accomplish all these plans within the next two years.
According to a source from the industry, the Sports and Leisure Apparel Limited is currently having a number of three flagship Lacoste stores, 37 boutiques and two corners in India at the moment. The company has increased the average area per store by 180% over the last two years and it has also opened six new Lacoste stores in the last year. However, though it has closed down 14 Lacoste stores last year, it did increase the capacity in its Noida manufacturing unit by 30%. The Managing Director And Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. Vikas Gupta has said on Friday that they are now planning to expand their business through the company-owned stores, as a "fundamental strategy to control the customers experience".
In the words of Mr. Gupta, "In India, we have been doubling our turnover every three years, that will continue". He added, "In line with that, our customer base has also been growing by 40-60% every three years". The sources from the industry have informed that the Lacoste brand has reported worldwide sales of 1.5 billion in the year of 2007 in terms of wholesale. The eight lines of business for which Lacoste has global licenses include: the apparel, fragrances, sunglasses, footwear, leather goods, belts, watches and bed and bath linen. While talking about the companys products available in India, Mr. Gupta said, "Six of the product categories are present in India and we should have the watches as well by the next six months. The bed and bath linen may take a while longer".