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Fabindia: Reinventing to Stay Relevant

CASE STUDY, STRATEGY
Prin.L.N. Welingkar Institute of Management Development and Research, 12 Pages
AUTHOR(S) : Swapna Pradhan, Professor, Prin.L.N. Welingkar Institute of Management Development and Research

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Fabindia: Reinventing to Stay Relevant

Fabindia Overseas Private Limited (hereafter referred as Fabindia) an ethnic wear1 Indian brand, was established in New Delhi, India in 1960. In the initial years, the focus was on exports of furnishings and the first retail store under the brand name of Fabindia was opened in the year 1976. Over the years it had carved out a niche for itself in the competitive Indian women’s wear market. However, the contours of the Indian retail and consumer market had changed rapidly over the past decade, with many new brands entering the market and the growth of the internet. The country had witnessed the emergence of newer channels of retail and the proliferation of social media had played an important role in the success of many brands. While the brand had retailed across the country for almost two decades it had never invested in a structured customer loyalty program. Fabindia had focussed only on limited print advertising and word-of-mouth publicity. Could this sustain the brand in the years to come? What strategies should it adopt to grow in a market that was becoming increasingly competitive?....................

Exhibits

Exhibit I(A): The Indian Apparel Market (INR billion)

Exhibit I(B): The Indian Apparel Market Split

Exhibit II: Key Players in the Women’s Apparel Segment in India and Their Key Initiatives

Exhibit III: Fabindia Product Mix


1 Indian Ethnic wear would include various categories of traditional clothing worn by Indian women and men. This includes Sarees, Salwar Kameez, Lehenga, Kurti for women and Kurta Pajama, Sherwani, Dhoti Kurta for men.

Teaching Note Preview

Fabindia: Reinventing to Stay Relevant

Fabindia pioneered branded ethnic womens wear in the Indian market and popularized products made from traditional techniques and processes. It had achieved this feat by adopting a strategy of no discounts, no promotions and marketing indigenously made products in a competitive market full of national and international brands. While the brand had grown and had a loyal customer base, the rapidly changing Indian consumer now enjoyed many options while shopping. The Indian retail market had grown and this was driven by a large growing population, youth domination, urbanization, higher disposable incomes and changing lifestyles. While regional choices still influenced buying, the Indian consumer was changing fast, competition had increased and apparel as a category was transitioning from a need-based buying category to a lifestyle category. The consumer now made purchases at will, from the locations that they choose from. Social media played an important role for any brand and Fabindia’s brand building thus far had focused on limited print advertising and word-of-mouth publicity. Could this sustain the brand in the future? What is the strategy that the brand could adopt to grow in a market that was becoming increasingly competitive?..........................

Exhibits

Exhibit (TN)-I: PORTER’S FIVE FORCES ANALYSIS

Exhibit (TN)-II: SWOT Analysis for Fabindia

Exhibit (TN)-III: Fabindia’s Future Strategy

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Abstract

Fabindia pioneered branded ethnic womenswear in the Indian market and popularized products made from traditional techniques and processes. It had achieved this feat by adopting a strategy of no discounts, no promotions and marketing indigenously made products in a competitive market full of national and international brands. While the brand had grown and had a loyal customer base, the rapidly changing Indian consumer now enjoyed many options while shopping. The Indian retail market had grown and this was driven by a large growing population, youth domination, urbanization, higher disposable incomes and changing lifestyles. While regional choices still influenced buying, the Indian consumer was changing fast, competition had increased and apparel as a category was transitioning from a need-based buying category to a lifestyle category. The consumer now made purchases at will, from the locations that they choose from. Social media played an important role for any brand and Fabindia’s brand building thus far had focused on limited print advertising and word-of-mouth publicity. Could this sustain the brand in the future?

Pedagogical Objectives

The case study should enable the student:

  • To comprehend the complexities of the Indian women’s ethnic wear market and its competitive dynamics
  • To analyse the competitive advantage of Fabindia
  • To suggest a strategy for growth in an increasingly competitive market

Position in the Course

The case is designed for a Masters level course and an MBA audience. It can be used to enable the student understand the retail business environment and retail business strategy.



This Case Pack Includes:
- Abstract
- Case Study
- Teaching Note (**ONLY for Academicians)
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