Raymond Weil to increase presence in India

Swiss luxury watch maker Raymond Weil will tap markets in non-metro cities and towns across India to expand presence in the country.

The company plans to have presence in cities such as Lucknow, Patna, Bhopal, Jaipur, Surat and Vijaywada to tap the rising aspirational levels at these places.

"We are going into tier II and III places as Lucknow, Patna, Bhopal, Coimbatore... There is a desire to wear a good brand," Raymond Weil President and CEO Olivier Bernheim told PTI.

Stating that demand is expected from young consumers in the age of around 35, he said that "the growth target would come from tier II and III places".

Bernheim added: "We have opened in Coimbatore four months ago, we would open in Kochi this month. We are also looking at Indore, Bhopal kind of place. We are going to Surat."

He said however that in smaller places the company will not open its exclusive stores.

"It would be a shop-in-shop concept with multibrands. For tier II and III city, they are not ready for exclusive showrooms," he added.

He declined to share how many shops would be opened by the end of this year and also total investments.

Raymond Weil is available in 55 outlets in India. The company which sells watches ranging from Rs 45,000 to Rs 8 lakh is also aiming for good traction from its ladies segment which contributes 35 per cent of its sales in India.

"Ladies (segment) is always doing well in India. Its all about diamond, jewellery, weddings. India is a big market for ladies products," Bernheim said.

The slowdown in the economy and depreciation of the Indian rupee against US Dollar has had an impact on Raymond Weil's growth in India, he said. "It had certainly slowed down the pace of growth."

Yet, sounding optimistic about an uptick in the market, he said: "We are preparing for the post election times and every one is hopeful that there will be a new desire for shopping and taking goods... Hopefully the difficult times will be over."

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