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Evolution is a rare constant in the fashion business; success comes from staying on top of
fashion trends and satisfying the savvy, discerning (and sometimes fickle) customer. There is
plenty to choose from in the market and customers have a wide range to sample. Retailers
need to cater to different requirements at different price points. The total concept and idea of
shopping has undergone an attention drawing change in terms of format and consumer
buying behaviour, ushering in a revolution in shopping in India. Modern retailing has entered
into the Retail market in India as is observed in the form of bustling shopping centres, multi-
storied malls and the huge complexes that offer shopping, entertainment and food all under
one roof.

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In 1997, the Indian retail sector consisted of predominantly of small owned operator outlets,
negligible real estate and labour costs and paying little or no taxes. The Tata¶s one of the
biggest houses in India, entered the retail by opening their first lifestyle store- Westside, in
April 1998 in Bangalore. With strategic selection of location and merchandise, focus on
customer service and employee development, they expanded to four stores by 2000 and nine
stores by 2002. With the opening of a sixteenth store in 2004, Westside was established as
one of India¶s largest chains of retailers, covering a total floor area of 0.4 million square feet,
with average store size ranging from 15000-20000 square feet and yearly sales of rupees
6800 per square foot.

Till the early 1990¶s there were about 5.5 retail outlets for every 1000 people in India, the
highest in comparison to any other country in the world. But most of these outlets were
smaller than 500 square feet in size, making India¶s per capita retailing space about 2 square
feet, as compared to 16 square feet in the United States.
Subsequently, more and more organized players had entered the booming retail market,
including super marts, hypermarkets and departmental stores, bringing them with
professional management and market presence. The first among these was Shopper¶s Stop, a
chain of depart mental stores, offering a complete range of apparels and lifestyle accessories
for the entire family.
The Tata group, one of India¶s largest and oldest conglomerates with over 80 diversified
companies spread over seven sectors, also entered the retail sector in this decade. The
company had entered the cosmetics business in 1952 with Lakme Ltd., headed by Mrs.
Simone Tata, and became one of the leading players in cosmetics and toiletries in the
country. In 1996, Lakme was sold to Hindustan Lever for rupees two million and the Tata¶s
started scouting for new business opportunities. In 1997, Trent Limited- a Tata Enterprise
was created, with Simone as chairperson. A departmental store in Bangalore was acquired
and restarted under the name Westside.

Westside
Format: Mid-price offerings, private label
fashion
Launch: 1998, in Bangalore (erstwhile
Littlewoods, a UK-based store)
Selling proposition: Affordable style and
quality merchandise
Key categories: Apparel and footwear
Store size: 8,000-34,000 square feet
Presence: 41 stores in 23 cities
Plans: To open eight-ten stores in the current
financial year

 
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Westside has a number of stores in Ahmadabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Ghaziabad,


Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, Nagpur, Noida, Pune,
Surat, and Vadodara. The stores are located at convenient locations for easy access by target
customers. The visual merchandising of the stores are very attractive and appealing which
helps in increasing the number of footfalls in the store per day.

  

Westside India is one of the fastest and largest rising chains of retail supplies in India.
Westside India has launched various shopping stores and outlets to meet with the various
shopping requirements of the customers. The corporation has established 36 Westside
merchandise stores, which encompass kids wear, women¶s wear, Menswear, footwear,
perfumes, cosmetics, handbags, gifts, household accessories and lingerie. The well designed
interiors, prime locations, coffee shops and sprawling space boosts the buyer¶s shopping
experience.
Westside stores have the following departments - Menswear, Women's wear, Lingerie, Kids
wear, Household Accessories, Cosmetics, Perfumes and other accessories. Each of West
side¶s departments offers a complete range.

For Women there are Western casual, Western formals and very classy Ethnic wear with a
look unique of Westside. In Western wear again the range has great depth spanning from
basic lines to very trendy casual wear. Unlike a lot of stores, the range at Westside caters a
wide age group and takes into the account the differing tastes and requirements. The range
does not end with clothes but extends right into accessories. The store has a great range of
Handbags, jewellery, scarves and other accessories.

Kids also have huge range to select from. Catering to a wide age band-starting from infants to
early teens the garments sport a look that is hip, trendy and very International.

In Menswear the range extends from formal to casual to sporty. Also there is a wide price
range starting from value and extending into premium.

The Household section is open of the most contemporary around. Every item here is
exclusive and unique. The merchandise is well coordinated and customers can mix and match
and put it together their way. The rang is extensive starting from colourful towels and
bathroom sets to bed linen, table linen, and crockery down to bric a brac for the household.
There is also a wonderful gift section with the trendiest of collection.

The Westside stores are open on 365 days. Most of the stores offer exclusive parking. So
shopping becomes that much more convenient.

    ÷ 

1.? 2F4U
2.? SRC
3.? GIA
4.? URBAN ANGEL
5.? INTIMA
6.? DAVID JONES
7.? ASCOT
8.? BLACKBERRY ETC.

Westside has recently expanded its range of merchandise by offering outfits from some of
India¶s best-known fashion designers, among them Wendell Roderick¶s, Anita Dongre,
Krishna Mehta and Mona Pali. This is an interesting marketing shift, since it means moving
away from the chains only-our-own-brands concept.


    

The age group of people visiting the store is in between 18-40. (Upper middle and middle
class) The attraction of the shopping is basically the female population. The movement of
men¶s apparels is also due to the ladies buying for the men.

` 

       

1. at weekend (Sunday b/w 3-5pm)


Per 10 min = 45 footfalls
Per 1 hr = 270footfalls
1 working day (10hr) = 2700 footfalls

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  ÷÷÷ 

ë? Lakme fashion week: Westside India was associated with the Lakme Fashion Week,
which held in March, 2009. Manish Gupta along with Narendra Kumar and Wendell
Rodricks, who are internationally commended designers, showcased their exquisite
Designer-Prêt collection, which is exclusively accessible to all Westside stores
during summers.

ë? Westside Group¶s Kid west: Recently, Westside India has launched KIDWEST,
which is basically kid¶s program that incorporates learning and playing
simultaneously, in its outlets operating in Pune, Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi.
Westside have also launched an interactive site for kids, which boasts of several
features like events, updates, style centre, games and quizzes. This program is a
suitable option to make your child learn while playing.

 ÷   ÷ 
?

Before commencing operations, Trent examined national and international retailing trends.
Research showed that Indian retailers stocked both in-house and other brands in the ratio of
30:70, as it was easier to attract customers to established brands. Stocking in- house brands
implied poor economies in sale and huge investments on market research and brand building.
Gross margins of own label apparels were estimated to be as high as 48-50%, even when they
were priced lower than outside brands.
Westside decided to introduce its own in-house brands, eliminating intermediaries and selling
to customers at low prices. These brands provided higher returns, had no restrictions in terms
of display, promotion or pricing and gave greater control over manufacturers, suppliers and
quality of merchandise. About 90% of Westside¶s goods were in house products, and the
other 10% were leading brands of toys, cosmetics and lingerie.

Westside gave a high priority to marketing in order to increase brand awareness among
consumers. The company focused on two parameters - style and affordability - to
communicate to potential customers.

The company realized that these were the two pillars based on which it could make an impact
on customers. The stores were positioned on the 'fashion at affordable pricing' platform. The
store level promotions were integrated with external communication through advertising. In-
store promotions were used to give the shopper a feeling of getting greater value, to offer a
good shopping experience. Westside's total advertisement spending was 8 per cent of its
sales. Westside did its regular brand building through advertisements in the media and also
through its in-house promotions, which peaked during summer, Diwali and Christmas.
During the Diwali season in 2000, Westside launched a "Festival of Delights" program which
gave each shopper a scratch-and-win card

Westside sources announced that Yuvraj Singh would promote Westside stores in Bangalore,
Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune and Delhi.
Westside sources announced that Yuvraj Singh would promote Westside stores in Bangalore,
Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune and Delhi.

According to company sources, the new media initiatives were aimed at increasing brand
awareness among consumers, and enhancing the image of Westside as a retailer offering
fashionable products at affordable prices.

Analysts attributed Westside's success to its focus on styling, affordability and quality, and its
retail model.

³Our biggest strength is that we keep on refining ourselves and improving our offering - both
product - and service-wise, correcting our mistakes and this keeps us going."

- Simone Tata, Chairperson - Trent

"Being a brand retailer, we are able to develop our style and image in a manner whereby
customers can build a relationship with us."

- Himanshu Chakrawarti, General Manager ± Trent

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1.? Attract shoppers & keep them in stores- the amount of time shoppers

spend in a store is perhaps the single most important factor in determining

how much they will buy.

2.? Honour the transition zone- on entering a store, people need to slow down

& short out the stimuli which means customer will likely be moving to

fast to respond positively.

3.? Don¶t make them hunt- put the most popular products up front to reward

busy customer & encourage them to look more.

4.? Women¶s need more space- A customer specially a women is far less

likely to buy an item, if her derriere, is brushed, by any other customer.




 ÷ ÷÷ 

The policy of Westside group is to satisfy the customers with a variety and quality line of
products.

High quality, latest in-style products, International shopping experience and value for money
pricing-that's what you get at Trent Ltd's Westside Stores, Starting with one store at
Bangalore in April'98, Westside is already a part of the city's landscape in Mumbai,
Hyderabad, Pune and Chennai.

Westside recently introduced a new promise on kids wear ² Kid durable tag ² with the
sales line: µIf you outwear them before you outgrow them, we will take it back¶. This was an
outcome of a customer study that highlighted the wear and tear that children¶s clothes go
through and how kids grow out of these clothes within, on average, six months. This also
reinforces the promise of quality that Westside offers its customers.

There are many other such examples of keeping the customer in the centre of the sales frame.
The Westside Club West programme has secured tremendous loyalty, with members
contributing more than 50 per cent to the chain¶s business. Westside considers these loyal
shoppers as family members and has nurtured its relationship with them through a variety of
ways, by, for instance, communicating what¶s new (based on buying preference) and
rewarding them with special offers, previews and early shopping hours during sales.

The loyalty dynamics is further strengthened by the service that customers have come to
expect from Westside. Ensuring a good store experience with well-trained staff, a robust
customer feedback system, and quick resolution of customer issues has resulted in the chain
being consistently ranked among the best for service in the last five years, through annual
customer satisfaction surveys.

Westside¶s training model is recognised for its efficacy by the retail industry. Front-office
staff receives 26 hours of training before they get on the floor; they are then coached every
month on product and service standards. Soft skills, such as personality development and
grooming, are also on the service plate. Many employees have moved up the ranks to become
area managers; this helps develop enduring bonds with employees in an industry that has to
cope with a high turnover rate.

Westside is arguably the fastest growing retail chain in India. In a crowded market, Westside
is one of a kind with its own brand of merchandise, which is both trendy and individualistic.
Everything you find at Westside is exclusively designed for Westside. The range is changed
frequently (there are new introductions every week). Every time you visit you are likely to
find something different. Boasting of a variety of designs and styles, the merchandise at the
Westside stores are an exciting mix with a range extending from stylised clothes and
accessories for men, women and children to well-coordinated table linens, artefacts, home
accessories and furnishings. Add to it the plush interiors, sprawling space, prime locations, a
lovely coffee shop, Café West by Taj and ever-helpful personnel, and you have the ultimate
in retail ambience. It is shopping experience redefined.

   

Westside, a unit of Tata Enterprise Trent Ltd., is targeting a turnover of Rs.100 crore from its
retail chain business by the end of fiscal 2001-02. The retail chain is opening its seventh store
in Kolkata soon and is planning to set up two or three more by end of March 2002.

Westside had reported a profit of Rs.13 crore in fiscal 1999-2000 on a turnover of Rs.49
crore.

Noting that the company's retail chain model is based on an extremely profitable business
model, Mr. Chakrawarti expected that the turnover will touch rs.100 crore by the end of the
current fiscal.

The chain will open one more store in Lucknow after Kolkata, and a second store is being
planned in Mumbai.

Trent Ltd.'s retail chain was started in 1998 with the takeover of a retail outlet in Bangalore
owned by the UK-based Little Woods Ltd.

After the first store at Bangalore, the company set up retail stores in Hyderabad, Chennai,
Mumbai, Pune and Delhi
  ÷ 
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Trent entered the retail industry back in 1998 with Westside, its apparel and fashion brand.
Eleven years on the company has, with the addition of international fashion brands Sisley and
the imminent entry of Zara and Top Shop, and the value format Fashion Yatra, crafted a
multi-pronged presence in this ever-expanding segment.

Westside and its siblings have enabled Trent to establish itself in a rapidly transforming retail
landscape that has seen a number of Indian and foreign brands jostling for customers and
their loyalty. Consequently, Trent now has a footprint in the retail fashion and apparel across
India, from metros to small towns, offering customers a unique shopping experience and an
extensive spread of products

In the retail business, it is important that your stock not be perceived as ³boring´, she added,
and just as important to ³offer something new every week to induce customers to come to
your store instead of going to another´. Westside has continued to build on these lessons ²
by staying in touch with fashion trends, architecting a distinct store identity, understanding
the inclinations of its customers, and continually enhancing their shopping experience. That
explains how Westside has emerged as a successful business, with a customer base of over
800,000 people, many of whom swear by the cut and fit, style and price of the chain¶s
offerings.

West side¶s accomplishments can be attributed to its strategy of establishing stores in what
can be described as catchment areas, adopting a private-label format and fashioning, so to
speak, a selling proposition that connects quality and affordability. These factors have been
such strong differentiators that even though the Westside chain is smaller than some of its
competitors ² it has 41 stores in 23 cities ² it is one of the most successful and consistently
profitable formats in the organised retail segment. Despite the recent economic slowdown,
Westside has managed to ride the waves by concentrating on optimising costs, tightening
inventory control and taking a disciplined approach with aging merchandise. These and other
endeavours fetched Westside the Asia Retail Congress 2008 µRetailer of the Year, Private
Label¶ award, an honour bestowed by the retail industry. Westside has also recently won the
µImages Retailer of the Year ± Department Store¶ at the Images Retail Awards of 2009.

As shopping malls begin to get crowded once again, Trent for its part is ready with new
merchandise, new collections and the latest in fashion trends. That, it must be said, is the
fashionable way to go.