Delhi’s favourite leather product maker Nappa Dori scouts for space in Mumbai

NEW DELHI: Nappa Dori, a relatively little-known maker and retailer of handmade leather products, has become a sought-after brand for malls.

Its first store was over four years old when Select CityWalk, an uptown South Delhi mall, offered it 400 square feet of space on terms set by the founder Gautam Sinha. Yet, it took three months to persuade Sinha to come on board. Yogeshwar Sharma, executive director of Select CityWalk, said the effort was worth it because the brand attracts attention in his mall.
"We chose Nappa Dori over other well-known brands because of its well-designed products and the founder's clarity of vision," he said.

Even when the five-year-old maker and retailer of leather bags, trunks, stationery and accessories started scouting for locations for its first store in Mumbai, offers from wellknown malls were a-plenty. However, none was accepted.

"We are not a mall type of brand. We have a select audience and have our own ways of reaching out to them," said Sinha, who is also the creative director of the company. He declined to reveal the revenue of the company.

Nappa Dori, which means leather and thread, currently has four stores in New Delhi and is looking for space in Mumbai and Gurgaon. The startup has its products in select stores outside the country including The Conran Shop in Paris and London, Anthropologie in the US and Benares in Singapore. Close to 70 per cent of its customers are expats.

With bags ranging from Rs 6,000 to Rs 16,000, Nappa Dori competes with established companies such as Da Milano and Hidesign.

Nappa Dori is as choosy about ecommerce as it is of malls. "Online marketplaces might increase volumes but will simply dilute the brand," Sinha said. The startup had its own ecommerce set-up in place since the day of inception and gets as much as 14 per cent of its sales from online orders. 

Nappa Dori now plans to expand its product range. "Shoes will be a natural progression for us. We have done them earlier, but one has to have strong partners," said Sinha, a graduate from National Institute of Fashion Technology. Luggage and related accessories are also on the radar of the company, which has close to 30 people working at its Sultanpur office-cum-studio. Apparels will come next.

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