Footwear major Aero Club, maker of Woodland brand, is gearing up to make a splash in the FMCG category, with a range of personal care products.
The products, such as sunscreens and anti-bacterial lotions, would be sourced from a German company, BNS. The brand plans to use the distribution strength of its own stores before selling it across retailers.
Harkirat Singh, Managing Director, Woodland, said, “We would be using the 380 company-owned stores to launch our FMCG range under the Woodland brand. These are not typical FMCG products in the beauty space, but more about protecting the skin while you are outdoors and will be herbal and eco-friendly. The products are manufactured by a company based in Germany, from whom we are sourcing shoe care products.’’
Woodland will take advantage of its own retail outlets before trying to sell it through multi-brand outlets.
It has earmarked Rs 80-100 crore for investment this fiscal as it expands with new stores and enters the FMCG business. The 20-year-old brand intends opening 50-60 stores this year and all will be company-owned.
Though the sector is growing at a CAGR of 25 per cent, Woodland claims it is not seeking funds from international players despite FDI being allowed in single-brand retail. “We might look at FDI at a later stage, but for the moment, our growth is sustainable,” added Singh.
Introduced as an outdoor brand, Woodland has graduated to the high fashion segment with a new brand Woods. It now plans to have standalone stores for Woods as well.
“While menswear brands still comprise 70 per cent of the category, of late, there is a shift towards womenswear. We are planning 10 new stores for Woods, which will be focused on high fashion wear for women,” added Singh.
The target customer base for both Woods and Woodland would continue to be the 17-25 age group.
With sales turnover of Rs 850 crore this fiscal, Woodland is positioned as a premium footwear brand, with a price range of Rs 3,000 to Rs 10,000. However, it has introduced a slightly lower-priced range for the cash-and-carry outlets such as Bharti Walmart.