Apparel Spending by Indian Shoppers: Growth nearly threefold in last decade

The market for apparel in India grew at a CAGR of 13.8% in FY18, according to a report by CARE ratings
Women’s wear contributes almost 38%, and is largely dominated by ethnic apparel such as sarees, and suits.

Indians spent ₹5,408 billion on buying clothes in 2018, a jump from the ₹1,924 billion they spent in 2010, as higher disposable incomes, greater migration to large cities, and brands opening up in non metros helped more people access branded clothing.

The market for apparel in India grew at a CAGR of 13.8% in FY18, according to a report on India’s apparel market by CARE ratings.

CARE used data from CMIE and measured private final consumption expenditure (PFCE) on clothing to map overall expenditure on apparel in India. While men’s clothing continues to constitute to be the biggest chunk of the local apparel market, at 41%; kids wear that is 21% of the overall market is the fastest growing segment in India.

Women’s wear contributes almost 38%, and is largely dominated by ethnic apparel such as sarees, and suits. However, denim is the fastest growing sub-segment for women’s wear. “The robust growth in this segment can be attributed to the rising income levels, rising number of working women and more college going females,” Saurabh Bhalerao. associate director, industry research, CARE Ratings said in the report.

For long the country’s top fashion brands focused on largely catering to shoppers in the country’s top metros. However, a proliferation of e-commerce and the popularity of the mall culture in tier 2 cities such as Indore, Surat, and Kochi over the last decade has helped brands cater to these markets. Additionally, more digitally connected shoppers across markets are now aware of the latest fashion trends. “The increasing purchasing capacity and awareness of fashion and trend in small cities has also resulted in providing a huge market to the organised players of the country,” the report noted.

Indians however still remain value conscious.

As a result, medium-price apparels hold majority share among the market followed by economy segment. Here, “the price sensitive rural population forms a major part of the value and economy price segments of apparel market.” Further, driven by the twin trends of premiumization and value consciousness, the mid-market segment is being squeezed on both sides, CARE noted.

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