Indus-League Clothing Ltd, part of the Future Group, has announced the launch of two exclusive Manchester United stores in Palladium Mall, Mumbai and in Forum Mall, Kolkata. The brand, which is going after a target of Rs 10 crore in the first year, hopes to scale up to Rs 50 crore in the next 2-3 years.
Rakesh Biyani, Joint Managing Director, Pantaloon Retail India Ltd, said, “With around 20 million fans in India, Manchester United is by far the most followed football club in the country and we are happy to partner with them to launch the brand in India.”
Indus League has opened two exclusive brand stores for Manchester United and the remaining are shop-in-shops in Centrals and Pantaloon stores. Of the 20 shop-in-shops in 6-8 cities around the country, most are open or will be open over the next two-three days. Rachna Agarwal, CEO, Indus League, remarked, “I am elated to add Manchester United to the portfolio of Indus League Brands. Next year, we are thinking of opening one store in Delhi and one in Bangalore and post that we will take it one step at a time. We have to identify the right stores at the right location. The timing would also be dependent on the right store being available. We are, hopefully, looking at 4 exclusive stores and maybe a total of 30-35 shop-in-shops by the end of summer. We will also be opening shop-in-shops at Planet Sports.”
The standalone stores will provide fans with a complete, authentic and exciting experience of being at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United. These flagship stores will provide a big boost to the already intense popularity of the brand in India. Merchandise at stores comprises of apparels for adults and children as well as a complete array of memorabilia and accessories, all of which embody the core Manchester United essence – ‘Glory & Greatness’. Fans will also get an opportunity to personalise their jersey by choosing a name and number and the customised jerseys will be printed and delivered instantly.
To celebrate the launch in India, there have been many consumer activities planned for fans, besides the unique in-store experience. Agarwal elaborated, “A contest ‘Kick off to Old Trafford’ is one of the contests that we are running for consumers in our two EBOs. Customers can fill up a contest form after which we will do a lucky draw and select one couple from our Kolkata store and one from the Mumbai store who will get to watch the match, between Manchester United and Liverpool, live at Old Trafford on February 11. Apart from this, we are also doing outdoor campaigns in Mumbai and Kolkata which has just started. We will also be doing a lot of activities on the Manchester United global Facebook page. We are also having activations this weekend (December 17-18) at our store in Mumbai and during the Christmas weekend (December 24-25) in Kolkata as both the stores are located in high-traffic malls.”
Indus League is running the contest currently in the two EBOs. Agarwal added, “Our shop-in-shops are still getting operational and once they are ready, we will do different activations at different points in time as it is now about getting people to know that exclusive Man-U merchandise is available in India. The budget set aside for the marketing and promotions are very high right now since we are launching the brand but over time it will come down. We will have around 100 SKUs – apart from apparel, a lot of other merchandise also from mugs, posters, calendars, socks, zipped bands, fridge magnets, key chains etc. We also have some autographed memorabilia which we are currently using only for visual merchandising.”