February 5, 2023

Innovation in activewear propelling its steady growth | Manufacturing News India – Apparel Resources

The increasing participation of women in sports activities and the promotion of activewar as casualwear has led to the expansion of the activewear market in India

In the US, Target’s activewear brand  All in Motion   hit US $ 1 billion in sales one year after launching. In Indian, the biggest retail giant, Reliance Retail is expanding the presence of the high-performance and technologically advanced activewear brand ‘Performax’ through exclusive brand outlets (EBOs) at Reliance Retail’s fashion plus lifestyle stores and digital platforms while well like in multi-brand outlets. It already has a presence across over 1000 stores within 330+ cities. Just six months back, Van Heusen associated with Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd (ABFRL), a premium lifestyle brand for professionals, entered into the activewear category plus launched a new sub-brand ‘Flex’. There are many more such examples that show how throughout the globe, brands and retailers have tilted towards the activewear category. Indeed, across all levels, be it D2C brands, celebrity manufacturers, budding start-ups and Instagram sellers, the particular activewear product category is in constant demand from the last few years.

Compared to various markets across the globe, India is the fastest-growing market of this segment, growing at the rate of 13. 9 per cent CAGR. Combination of innovations with fashion is the most significant factor leading to the particular growth of this product category which will be further supported by the active lifestyle of people. Blurring lines with many item categories like workwear or workout wear is also an important supporting factor contributing to the need. Various marketplace studies are also bullish about the particular growth trajectory in Of india – from a market size associated with US $ 5. 83 billion inside 2018, the Indian market for activewear is estimated to reach US $ 12. 47 billion by 2024 (footwear includes approximately 50 per cent). At the global level, the particular activewear market is expected to have a good effective CAGR of 6. 4 for each cent during the period of 2022-2032 and it is expected in order to expand through US dollar 421 billion dollars in 2022 to ALL OF US $ 779 billion in 2032. Growth is also enjoyed majorly by the companies that are usually dedicated to the combination of fashion and innovations.

Industry stalwarts are strongly of the observation that people are incorporating wellness routine in their way of life which is leading the activewear market to grow which in turn offers numerous opportunities for the entire value chain like apparel manufacturers, textile mills, finishers plus retailers. But this segment is now overcrowded as many players are there. However , irrespective of the growing number of brand names, this segment will have continuous demand going ahead.

Activewear is connected with an active life-style whether it is working out in the gym, office or public place. People especially millennials have fitness as their top priority but don’t necessarily always see themselves as sports-centric, so activewear is usually timeless, comfort and design-driven and with functional aspects. Activewear products possess strengths like being water-resistant, 4-way stretch, moisture wicking, air permeability, easy dry, ergonomic design, anti-bacterial   and anti-microbial formulations.

Shweta Bhatia, Partner, Head of technology investments, Eight Roads Ventures, India

Looking at the particular opportunities in the activewear segment, Eight Roads Ventures , a global venture capital firm, recently invested within BlissClub, the D2C women’s activewear brand name that is on track to hit Rs. 100 crore in annual revenue run-rate. Shweta Bhatia , Partner, Head of technology investments, Eight Highways Ventures, India says, “Activewear has become one of the fastest-growing apparel categories globally, including within India, driven by an increasing interest in health and fitness and shift towards comfortable clothing. ”

Youth top the requirement

Like fast fashion, youth, especially millennials plus Generation Y, Z are the flag bearers from the demand for activewear. And they are usually the best target audience with regard to companies geared up to grow in this product category.

Abhay Bahugune, COO, Van Heusen

Abhay Bahugune , COO , Vehicle Heusen says, “With the growing popularity of sports and home fitness, young consumers are seeking comfy and functional active/sportswear. Our Flex range is targeted at self-driven, passionate, stylish, tech-savvy, ambitious and assertive young professionals who are focused upon health and wellness. ”

And interestingly, women possess a significant share in this category along with women-specific items like sports activities bra, leggings having good demand. Plus Zivame plus Clovia , which started seeing that lingerie brands, are now present as leading brands regarding women’s activewear. Reliance Retail has a majority stake in both brands.

Having a specific focus on women’s activewear, BlissClub was founded in 2020 by Minu Margeret and has raised a total funding of US $ 20. 25 million so far. Minu Margeret says the company is on track hitting Rs. one hundred crore in annual income run-rate. The company came up with insanely comfortable activewear after extensive R& D and surveys. There are also manufacturers like Spirit Animal , reduced plus-size activewear brand that focuses on the curvy woman.

A year ago, Radhika Shanker, a professional footballer and Aditi Kakkar, a national-level weightlifter and CrossFit athlete launched Ochre Athletica focusing on comfortable activewear that will doesn’t cause itching or even tear off during or after the workout. It offers been also observed that the increasing participation of women and kids inside sporting activities and the promotion of activewar as casualwear has led to the particular expansion in the activewear marketplace in Indian.

Activewear, sportswear plus performancewear 

With the common thread associated with active way of living, these segments are used interchangeably but there are differences. Certainly, there is no strong and well-accepted demarcation between these segments like casualwear and formalwear.    

Activewear is where fashion meets performance and wearing during exercise. Athleisure sits in the intersection of exercise plus leisure.  

Brands believe that modern-day experts seamlessly change between work and play. Style, creativity, innovation, perfection, comfortable and yet fashionable are significant aspects of this section.  

Clovia believes that extra-fancy activewear is the new athleisure as it offers activewear products that can be styled as athleisurewear.  

There is a gradual blurring associated with lines among work attire and exercise attire due to global factors like celebrity collaborations with D2C and designer activewear brands. In fact , this is numerous product categories.  

To differentiate, sportswear is designed specifically for sports purposes, while activewear is designed to transition from exercisewear to casualwear. Certain functions like comfort, specific fabric weight plus sport-specific (Swimming, Cycling etc . ) requirements are significant factors differentiating both groups.

Prasanta Sarkar, an clothing expert believes that activewear is casual, comfortable clothing suitable for sports or exercise whereas athleisure is informal, comfortable clothes designed to be suitable both for workout and everyday wear. Athleisure clothes are perfect for travelling and walking.  

Association with celebrities 

Film celebrities plus sportspersons have higher concern for their fitness and in the Indian market, celebrities have a direct connection with the activewear segment. It’s going to be a decade now since actor Hrithik Roshan released his (co-owned) brand HRX and thereafter, cricketer Virat Kohli created Wrogn brand, and 2016, another actor Shahid Kapoor developed SKULT. Later Tiger Shroff launched the activewear brand Prowl.

The majority of these brands have got performed well and are continuously growing. HRX is now the Rs. 500 crore plus brand, similarly, Wrogn is also doing well and Porwal was launched on Flipkart in October 2022. Abhishek Maloo , Senior Director , Flipkart Fashion states, “Over the past two years, we at Flipkart have observed an increase in the demand for activewear. With this segment becoming more mainstream, its share of the closet as a fashion essential has increased tremendously. We believe PROWL will effectively cater to the growing need for fashionable and comfortable clothing. ”

On the other hand, along with a focus on improvements and creativeness, various brands are associated with celebrities for their activewear products. Clovia has related to actress Payal Rajput, Performax of Reliance has signed cricket star and India’s top bowler, Jasprit Bumrah as its brand name ambassador.

Material may be the core 

All brands are on their toes intended for innovation in activewear and the thrust is definitely on raw material. Target has highlighted that the majority of ‘All In Motion’ activewear incorporates sustainably sourced materials, primarily including recycled polyester plus sustainably found cotton. Truck Heusen also has an innovative ‘reflect technology’ along with reflective elements that look normal during the day but glow in the dark.

Founded by Sanjana Masand, Seeq , majorly uses a blend of nylon and spandex (78: 28 or 88: 12), reused polyester and spandex etc., that are built with quick-drying yarns, provide compression and allow a four-way stretch with high recovery. Heat-bonded seams plus ventilation design detail are also strengths with the brand’s products. Bliss Club ’s leggings have features like deep pockets, true ankle length and foldable waistbands.

Budding start-ups DaMENSCH , Zymrat (performance wear brand) have also created a strong presence in the market with their innovative products for men.

Ujjawal Asthana, Co-Founder, Zymrat

“At Zymrat, we believe that technologies elevates performance. And by combining engineered fabrics with industry-first tech, we’ve managed to launch world-beating items. Our innovation is structured and methodical, solving problems through incremental benefits plus tailored for the Indian audience. All innovations at Zymrat are led by a solution to a problem. We made SuperSilva T-shirt to solve the common problem of odour in products which are sweat resultant, SuperVent to add more breathability to the bottoms and thereby solve the problem of fabric sticking to the skin throughout intense workouts, Centurion has been made to solve the issue associated with weight within running T-shirts, ” says Ujjawal Asthana , Co-Founder , Zymrat.

Leading brands 

Global: Nike, Puma, ASICS, FILA Decathlon, Columbia Sportswear, Lululemon, Sweaty Betty, Alo Yoga

India: HRX, Alcis, BlissClub, Tego, Myriad Activewear, c9, Silvertraq, Ochre Athletica, Kica, SeeqActive  

Overseas brand names have strength offering a complete portion

Activewear includes footwear, apparel and other few sports accessories (caps) too. The strong presence of international brands like The puma corporation, adidas, Nike, Decathlon and so forth, across all categories can be strongly in its favour. Puma India’s revenue was Rs. 2, 044 crore to get FY ’21 ended December. At the particular same time, its massive experience shops and engagements at stores attract customers more.

Just last month PUMA launched its first experiential store in Mumbai which is the largest store within West Of india. The brand, in the last one year, provides launched two other experiential stores inside Gurugram as well as in Bengaluru. Having highest turnover among the peers, The puma corporation has a total associated with 490 shops in India.

While couple of the Indian manufacturers have the edge offering similar attire products to these brand names but at affordable prices. The solid presence of Indian brands in smaller cities can also be supportive towards the growth associated with activewear.

Manufacturers in this segment that have their own labels have furthermore got the particular advantage of their distributors’ reach in Tier-3 plus Tier-4 towns or villages. E-commerce is certainly also beneficial to the industry as a whole.

Overseas brands’ massive experience stores and engagements in stores attract customers more

Producers enjoying development

The majority associated with manufacturers in this segment are enthusiastic about rapid plus steady growth. Few of them are sure about 15-20 per cent development at least, while there are usually companies which can be geared up to double their business in the next 3 to 4 years. Focus on innovation, quality and quick turnaround are major factors making them different from others.

Tirupur-based Techno Sports India, 1 of the most respected manufacturers with this segment, has integrated style and technology to drive innovations inside final products. With a current revenue associated with Rs. 200 crore, it aims pertaining to five times growth within the next a few years.   Sunil Jhunjhunwala, Techno Sport,   an ex-Microsoft engineer   also offers plans to start a fabric unit while his thrust has been development in materials.

Sunil Jhunjhunwala,   Techno Sport

“We possess been collecting data upon fabrics plus fibres meant for 8 years in order to develop better garments. We have got observed that will spandex is not good for activewear because it decreases air flow permeability and increases compression, so all of us ventured in to using polyester instead. We have also produced mesh clothes with good air permeability. These kinds of numerous elements are taken care of within product manufacturing ensuring our growth, ” says Sunil. The company spends 2 % of its annual revenue on R& Deb, in close collaboration with WRA (Wool Research Association).

He further adds that brands want Techno Sports activities, achieved great growth as they offered the greatest functional clothing that gave a transforming experience whilst keeping customer psychology in mind. At the same time, the price range is also affordable, unlike the particular globally well-known brands which might be unaffordable for that masses.

“Techno Sport is a firm believer in the fact that will Indian consumers do not give much attention to tags or information; they want the garment that meets their particular needs within their limited budget, ” avers Sunil.

Arpit Aryan Gupta, Director, Marketing, NG

Activewear is all about knit base, so businesses from knitting hubs like Tirupur, Ludhiana are witnessing high development in this particular segment. Arpit Aryan Gupta , Director , Advertising , NG Apparels, a leading manufacturer of activewear in Ludhiana says, “I have seen almost a 400 percent jump in India’s activewear market as more and more homegrown manufacturers have now started concentrating on quality rather than quantity and even customers these days are willing to pay the extra buck for an international standard homegrown product. I can expect the particular Indian activewear market in order to go two times in the next 5 years. ”

Overcrowded, not designed for quality products 

As per business estimates, there are more than 1000 brands across India which are into activewear and along with a growing focus on the same, it will not be wrong to say that this number is growing, so this space will be now overloaded.

Although new brands plus players from different levels are coming in this segment, but the majority of them are providing regular items which lack innovation specifically functional elements. Hence, these kinds of products have regular demand unlike the high demand just for proper activewear. So this segment appears to be overcrowded.

Mojostar , a Mumbai-based company, intending to co-create authentic, high-impact indigenous brands within lifestyle space, has released Prowl brand name. Abhishek Verma , CEO associated with the organization believes, “There is a gap in the activewear market for the purpose of products which have been meant for hyperactive young Indians. Traditional activewear brand names have over-specified the products, whereas young consumers want simplified functional products that offer great style. Products that help you look amazing, are usually suited with regard to multi-functional movement and they are simple to maintain, are the particular needs of this marketplace. ”

Along with quality and innovation, changing dynamics on the market plus economy are important aspects ensuring the long-term demand regarding activewear.

“India is a manufacturing economy, slowly shifting in the direction of a consumer economy which means the market is going to expand additional and with more and more people having higher incomes and international exposure, I believe that this market is usually ‘not’ overloaded with ‘quality’ products. There is going to be a huge demand for homegrown brands now with a focus on high quality and improvements, ” states Arpit.

Due to versatility and flexibility that activewear offers, it is here in order to stay but the market will be mainly intended for innovators only.

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