Raymond Ltd is hoping to make its pret retailing label BE a Rs 15-crore turnover brand by almost doubling its exclusive retailing network to over 20 stores by fiscal 2004-05. The BE project is also expected to break even operationally during the fiscal. Says Mr Anirudha Deshmukh, vice-president, Raymond Ltd: “We will have over 20 stores, including 2-3 stores abroad, by 2004-05. We expect BE’s retailing turnover to touch over Rs 15 crore in 2004-05.”
BE is a recent pret initiative by Raymond Ltd, which has one of the country’s largest fabric retailing chains. The Raymond group also makes and markets a range of apparel brands like Parx, Park Avenue, Manzoni and Color Plus. While all these brands cater to menswear segment, the BE brand targets both men and women.
BE is, however, still going through a learning curve: Raymond has discovered that the premium designerwear brand — the company sources merchandises from 15 well-known Indian designers — does not have many takers in downtown locations.
“BE stores at places like New Delhi’s Ansal Plaza are doing well while those at Karol Bagh had few takers,” says Mr Deshmukh.
He adds: “We will not be making money for the next two years — but at the operational level we will break even in 2004-05. In the pret business, it is critical for BE to turn around stocks faster.”
BE’s current turnover is estimated at around Rs 8.5 crore from 10 stores, including four in malls. The 11th store was recently opened in Chennai.
So far only one store has been opened abroad — a 1000 sqft store in Dubai, which is shared by ColorPlus and BE.