A luxury affair

Sep 17 2013, 08:59 IST
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SummaryAfter their tryst with mass products, e-commerce players are now peddling global luxury brands.

After their tryst with mass products, e-commerce players are now peddling global luxury brands. As they experiment with different business models, for the young, aspiring Indian customer, it's an opportunity to flaunt international labels

A young marketing executive gets an invite for a party scheduled for the following evening. However, as she is travelling on business, she is left with no time to go shopping for a dress. Desperately she flips through her favourite e-commerce websites. Voila! There's Jabong.com which sells designer dresses. Quickly, she orders an LBD by Elle. The next day when she reaches her office, a package is waiting for her. She opens it and finds the dress which she had ordered the previous day. In the evening she puts on the dress, and leaves for the party.

Harish Mehta, an NRI, is in India for a short vacation. He has just lost his favourite pair of Tag Heuer aviator sunglasses. Mehta does not have the time to visit the few shops in the city that stocks Tag Heuer sunglasses, and especially the model he wants. His problem is solved in a jiffy when he talks to his friend about it, who recommends him to visit Lenskart that retails luxury brands. Mehta goes on to the site, finds his favourite brand there and orders that one particular style.

The next day, Mehta makes a grand entrance at his college reunion, wearing his brand new sunglasses.

If in the last two years, the Indian e-commerce category has seen a rise in the number of websites dealing with mass products, in the last one year the category has witnessed an increase in the number of e-commerce portals selling premium or luxury brands. These portals retail a range of products sporting logos of brands such as Elle, DKNY, French Connection UK (FCUK), Gas, Timberland, Diesel, Dolce&Gabbana (D&G), Hugo Boss, apart from selling Indian designer wear by Manish Malhotra, Suneet Verma, Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla , Ashish Soni, Savio Jon, etc.

According to the Digital Commerce 2013 report by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), the digital commerce industry has expanded massively from

R19,249 crore in 2009 to R 47,349 crore in 2012. The market is expected to witness a 34% jump in 2013 to touch R62,967 crore. The e-tailing category (which comprises of consumer items such as books, apparels and footwear, jewellery, mobiles, cameras, computers, home and kitchen appliances,

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