Alia, Samantha, Manushi… ‘Brand India’ is enough for global luxury giants; Reason?

Korean Luxury fashion brands that used to chase pop star fame are now looking for Indian faces. Not only Alia but stars like Samantha and Karthik Aaryan are the Indian faces of luxury brands. What made luxury brands love India so much all of a sudden? International brands even organize special fashion shows in front of the wider India. An example is the show held by the international luxury brand ‘Dior’ in front of ‘Porth India’ in Mumbai. India’s rise as a global hub of luxury fashion has been going on for a while now. There is a clear reason behind all this. Know in detail about it…

∙ An Indian love story of luxury

On May 16, 2023, the international fashion show held in Seoul, South Korea was the center of attention of an Indian star – the Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt. Italian luxury fashion giant Gucci organized the cruise show, which was attended by many celebrities including Korean pop stars who have fans around the world. This is the first time Gucci has chosen an Indian star to be the brand’s global marketing presence. The location of the Gucci 2024 Runway Collection at Seoul’s cultural landmark Jeonbaekong Palace was the first reflection of that marketing strategy.

Alia Bhatt was in the lead along with leading K-pop singer and actress IU and other Korean and foreign stars. Alia Bhatt made her first media outing as the Gucci global representative stood out in a black cut-out dress with a ‘Gucci Jackie 1961 Transparent’ bag and ‘Korean Heart’ printed on her fingertips. Why Alia Bhatt to be the Global Ambassador of Gucci? Many people have this question!

Alia was never the center of global attention, confined only to Bollywood. Their first Hollywood film is about to release. Just two weeks before the Gucci Cruise show, Alia will hit the international stage for the first time. It is certain that Gucci chose the Bollywood star to be the new face of luxury because he stepped on the red carpet at the ‘Met Gala’ held in New York on May 1st. What prompted the Italian luxury brand to defeat all the world renowned players and seek an Indian presence for the global market? The reasons are not one but many.

∙ Global hub of luxury fashion

This is not the first time for India’s love affair with luxury brands. It’s just that this trend that started a few years ago is becoming more popular now. And, more international brands are targeting Indian stars. Last year, Louis Vuitton, a French presence in the world of fashion, made actress Deepika Padukone its international ambassador. In addition, six other Indian stars have signed contracts with various global brands. Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Manushi Chhillar, Athiya Shetty, Aditya Roy Kapur and Karthik Aaryan are brand ambassadors for major companies like Tommy Hilfiger, Estee Lauder, Langee, Nautica and Armani respectively.

In the field of luxury fashion, ‘Dior’ has chosen Indian soil to host its fashion show in April 2023. The Dior show was held in front of the ‘Gate of India’ in Mumbai, announcing that it was honoring India’s heritage in fashion. Major fashion labels are already tapping into India’s heritage and craftsmanship. But now international fashion companies are in love with finding more roots in Indian soil. That is why they are moving away from the usual way of bringing Indian inspired collections to the market and form deeper market strategies.

These brands incorporate our unique fabric and craft expertise in the new collections while handing over the credit to the Indian artisans. Dior has taken it a step further and arrived in Mumbai with a new collection.

For a long time, the girls of Mumbai’s ‘Chanakya’ School of Art and Craft did the handwork for Dior clothes. Dyer has come here to directly announce a partnership with ‘Chanakya’, an organization that aims for the survival of women through crafts to make them self-sufficient. It also aims to tap into the growing Indian market and adopt a ‘global approach’ to international customers.

India’s rise as a global hub of luxury fashion has been around for a while. South Asian countries supported the luxury brand market even during the Covid lockdown. They are certain that more growth can be achieved in this area in India. But this is not the only thing behind the brand’s love for India.

∙ Growing population; A growing market

Organizations that study changes in the market believe that South Korean culture, which has grown to become an influential force around the world through K-pop, is opening a new development model for India. If that happens, Indian players can make a big impact in the international market. International fashion brands believe that their customers can quickly identify with Indian stars.

The global luxury brand Dior is coming to Mumbai with a fashion show proving the importance the international giants are giving to the growth potential of India’s growing market. They have already seen India as one of the growing economies in the world. India is expected to overtake Germany and Japan to become the world’s third largest economy in the next decade.

With India surpassing China’s population according to a United Nations report, the market giants cannot ignore India’s allure. Estimates of 66 to 100 million of India’s population as middle class also open up market growth potential for them. This year Apple has opened its first store in India in Mumbai and is looking for the ‘shining spot’ of luxury.

∙ ‘Global Indian’

The marketing strategies of multinational companies are looking for the growth potential of a new market called ‘Global Indian’, not just the Indian market. According to the 2020 United Nations report, Indians are the largest diaspora community in the world. About 1.8 crore Indians live in various foreign countries. There are 35 lakh Indians in the UAE alone where luxury brands are competing to open stores. Brands are increasingly focusing on this segment.

Although it is not easy to quantify the ‘luxury spending’ of diaspora Indians alone, they are an unavoidable presence in the sales strategies of brands. Brands don’t think they can corner the ‘global Indian’ market by partnering with Indian designers and launching ‘capsule’ collections inspired by India. At the same time, they feel that having Indian players as a global face will increase acceptance. Luxury brands hope that respecting and appreciating the ‘global’ consumer will be ‘profitable’.

English Summary: Why Are World’s Luxury Fashion Brands Focusing on India?