India is the ideal market for international brands because of its diverse, dynamic and young market, says Barbara Grotto, Head of Communications of Italian global brand GAS which is planning to expand in the country through mono-brand stores, e-commerce portals and e-travel business by the end of this year.
“India is a diverse and dynamic market and there is a huge chunk of young people. As it is the most youngest in generation worldwide we wanted to bring our style here,” Grotto said during her visit to the country.
“We are running the business thorough mono-brand stores. Right now we have 16 mono-brand stores and, by the end of this year, will have 22. We have two flagship stores – one in Delhi and (the other in) Mumbai. We will also be available at stores like Lifestyle and Shoppers Stop from this fall/winter.
“We also have five big partners online in Myntra, Jabong, Snapdeal, Amazon and Flipkart and by the end of this year, we are also going to open at Mumbai airport’s domestic departure terminal,” added Grotta, the daughter of GAS president and founder Claudio Grotto.
She was born in 1974, deeply breathing the scent of denim. Hence, denim is in her genes. One of her most vivid memories when she was a child is the high piles of jeans ready for shipment that accumulated in the laboratory under her house. Over the years that laboratory has been transformed into an international firm bearing the family name that distributes its collections worldwide under the GAS brand.
In 2001, she began to make her way in the marketing office of the family business, to then hold the position of Head of Communications from 2004.
Today, she is a young manager with an extensive store of professional experience and hence when she was in India to attend an event in the capital along with her father and the head designer of the brand, Modesto De Luca, it was Grotto who took the centre stage and shared her plans for the brand in the years to come.
She feels that GAS as a brand caters to those who love fashion but is not a fashion victim and hence thinks that India too is a “potential customer” for her brand.
“Through our designs, we want to have global collections. Our target is the citizen of the world who is cosmopolitan, travels around the world and understands quality, material and the manufacturing of a garment.
“The person knows how to style and follows fashion, but is not a fashion victim – we believe that in India too, there are such customers; people who are well-educated, who have travelled the world and who know fashion and style. Hence, we want to target that section for our brand,” she said.
GAS, since 1984, designs, produces and distributes clothing, footwear and accessories for men, women and children. Today, the brand is determined to further expand its presence abroad, particularly in Europe and Asia.
“We believe that there is like a big space between Levis and Diesel and that is where we want to be. We are targeting that section with a denim that starts from Rs.7,000 ($110). GAS is an aspirational, premium, casual wear brand with a strong heritage in denim and that is where we want to bring our position in the market,” said Grotto.
“We wanted to bring our DNA in India and I believe that we had to come here because people want an international brand. For us, India is not a country but a continent,” she added.