We are aiming to open one store per month in India: Janne Einola, H&M

Janne Einola, Country Head, H& M, talks about the online retail business in the country, setting up hyperlocal stores, festive sales and more

e4m by Nafisa Shaheen
Updated: Dec 6, 2019 7:11 PM
Janne Einola

Clothing brand H&M has recorded 13 per cent growth in overall sales and with expectations of a bigger number from India it is keen to expand its Indian base with multiple stores being in the pipeline, said Janne Einola, Country Head, H& M.

The H&M group has 51 online markets and more than 4,900 stores in 74 markets including franchise markets. In 2018, net sales were SEK 210 billion. H&M has completed 4 years in the country and has sales recorded up to Rs 1,000 crore as of 31st January 2019.

In a chat with exchange4media, Einola talks about welcoming the new FDI rules to launching hyperlocal stores, the brand’s online and festive season sales, and more.

Edited excerpts:

How has FY 2018-19 been in terms of marketing and advertising for H&M?

The year has been amazing for us. We rolled out several marketing campaigns which gave us huge traction in terms of sales and business. We had two major campaigns this year - one for the Myntra launch in August and the other for the festive season.

H&M launched a digital campaign to celebrate its launch on the e-commerce site. It did exceedingly well with the help of influencers and Bollywood celebrities. We collaborated with 40 influencers and celebrities like Diana Penty, Harshvardhan Kapoor and others. It was also promoted on social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram and Facebook.

The festive season campaign was very indigenous to the country with the content created locally. The campaign focused on the diverse culture of India which blends seamlessly with the global fashion trends.

How did H&M welcome the amended FDI rules in India?

H&M has been sourcing in India for the past 35 years, we welcomed the new FDI changes and see this as a positive move. However, the ease of doing business for single-brand retailers still remains a big challenge.

What is the advertising mix for H&M?

We adapt the “digital-first” strategy for advertising. With digital gaining enormous momentum in recent times, digitalisation has been our primary focus. We do adopt other means too like OOH, print and television depending upon the target audience.

Did slowdown in the Indian economy affect your business?

Slowdown did not really affect us in India. We are aiming at one store per month strategy in India. H&M already has 45 stores with the 46th one opening soon in Jalandhar.
H&M is really positive about the Indian figures and it will grow massively in the coming future.

What are your plans for the year ahead?

We look forward to keeping up with the one store/ month strategy and expanding physical stores in the country, growing the market and establishing healthy relations.

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