Retail New India: In yet another sign that luxury retail is on an upswing in India, Italian high-end brand Stefano Ricci has decided to enter the country with 100 per cent foreign direct investment (FDI). So far, the company specialising in men’s luxury fashion has only 34 stores across Europe, Asia and the US. Its flagship store is in Florence.
While the company did not respond to an email questionnaire from Business Standard on its India plans, sources said Stefano Ricci is likely to open its India store either in Mumbai or Delhi once its application is cleared by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB).
Stefano, which has been around for 40 years and recently hit the headlines for creating the interiors of a luxury yacht, is among the few international companies coming to India with 100 per cent FDI. Under single brand retail policy, up to 100 per cent FDI is allowed, while foreign investment has been capped at 51 per cent in the multi-brand segment.
Earlier this month, Austrian crystal jewellery maker Swarovski had filed its application for 100 per cent FDI. The top-end brand currently operates in India through franchise stores, but now wants to run the business in the country independently.
India’s luxury market was pegged at $7.5 billion in 2012 and is slated to grow at a compounded annual growth of 16 per cent over the next three years. According to a joint study by market research firm IMRB and the Confederation of Indian Industry, the market is expected to effect a turnaround, growing by 14 per cent in 2013 ($8.65 billion), and cross the $10-billion mark in 2014, with a 17 per cent year-on-year growth.