Reliance Footprint plans to capture 15% share in India's footwear market

Reliance Footprint, a footwear specialty store from Reliance Retail plans to capture over 15% of India's footwear market by doubling retail stores each year and adding more brands in its portfolio.

So far, the retailer has opened 100 stores at an average size of 5000 sq ft each since 2007 and has around 5% market share. However, they opened as many as 50 stores just last year and the company say that the aggression to ramp up outlets will intensify each year.
"Going forward, the pace of opening stores will only increase. Footwear is a good margin business and we are already EBITDA positive last year," said Gopalakrishnan Sankar, Chief Executive, Reliance Footprint, which is now India's largest footwear company with 0.5 million space.

The company also intends to add newer states such as Bihar, Assam and Meghalaya to cover over 20 states this year.

The specialty retail format sells a range of 20,000 footwear, luggage and accessories products from over 50 international and national brands. In addition, they have an exclusive agreement with Japanese footwear firm ASICS alliance to sell their products exclusively in India.

With organized footwear retail currently taking up 35% of the overall Rs 17,000 crores footwear market in the country and estimated to grow at a 15% CAGR, Reliance Footprint feels that it can play a significant role in growth of the sector. However, the company, that has sales of around Rs175 crore said that accelerating the pace of growth isn't easy. ""Property prices are still expensive and its difficult to find manpower as well,"" Sankar added.

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