Adidas India has received government approval to own and run its own stores.
The German headquartered sportswear brand, which also sells Reebok-branded products in India, had submitted an application for 100 per cent foreign owned stores under India’s tough local ownership regulations in July.
In gaining approval, Adidas has beaten rival Nike, whose application last year was rejected, and so becomes the first sportswear brand to gain the right.
Dave Thomas, MD of Adidas Group India, confirmed the approval this week.
The company plans to open flagship stores in key cities, as it does in other international markets, but would continue to supply locally owned, franchised outlets as well.
“Own retail channel plus eCommerce channel, complemented by our franchise network, will drive growth for our brands and our business in India,” Thomas said.
Adidas entered India in 1995 and currently has a network of 760 franchised stores, two thirds of which sell only Adidas products.
“We would like to take this number up to 1000 stores by 2020,” Thomas said.
“We strongly believe own retail will enable us to take our market leadership position to an even higher level. It will give us additional flexibility to bring in global concepts across all categories in larger stores, thereby enabling us to further enhance the premium experience for our consumers,” he concluded.
A condition of the approval is that the company must source at least 30 per cent of its products locally.