Woodland looking at franchising

Indian footwear and outdoor gear brand Woodland is planning to open stores in China, Malaysia and Singapore along with franchising its brand in other markets.

Woodland is also taking the eCommerce route as part of its expansion, and is hiring social-media teams to run campaigns and online selling platforms in local languages.

After announcing plans two years ago to launch 25 stores across China, it has subsequently opened “about a dozen stores” in Hong Kong. Its products are available through distributors in Singapore, and the company plans to enhance its global distributor networks. It aims to add at least 10 retail outlets internationally over the next two years.

While the first few international stores will be company owned, MD Harkirat Singh says Woodland is open to franchisee formats for serious investors. The global stores will be a mix of independent stores and shops in shops.

Singh says the product line in international markets will be customised to suit the region’s climate. according to the climatic conditions of the region. Woodland looks to tap the fast-growing extreme-weather outdoor gear market both in national and international markets, and claims to already have an 80 per cent market share in this segment in India.

“While we have grown at an average of 15 to 20 per cent year-on-year in the past two to three years, the outdoor category has grown exceptionally in the past five years, says Singh. “Outdoor gear has become a lifestyle item, making our brand more popular.”

Founded in Canada in 1992, Woodland is owned by Delhi-based Aero Group, which has its own leather-tanning and production units in Bangladesh, Canada, China, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, The Philippines and Vietnam, and as well as India.


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