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We Are Targeting The Youth: Lakhani

Lakhani is on track to close the annual sales at around INR 160 crores in FY 19-20, and this will be a 60% growth over the previous year, Mayank Lakhani, MD, Lakhani Infinity Footcare tells Jyotsna Sharma of BW Businessworld.

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How does Lakhani Infinity Footcare differentiate itself from the competition?
Our vision is very clear. We are targeting the youth. Secondly, we are targeting a nation that is price sensitive. Our lowest product is priced at INR 300 in the basic category. We want to give our consumers the best quality products in the price range they can afford. Our consumers are willing to pay for our products over those of our competitors because they are assured of the affordability and appeal of our footwear. We are very invested in this market in terms of research and development, which helps us stay ahead of the curve when it comes to the design and manufacturing of new and innovative products. We constantly aim to launch new product designs almost every quarter. 

How do you engage with the digital consumer & what is the percentage of digital spends at Lakhani Infinity? 
Even though in this day and age, an e-commerce platform is mandatory for businesses to reach a larger audience, what has worked best for us is our very competent and strong distribution network. We are confident of achieving our targets with our existing workforce and more than 150 strong networks of distributors. Our focus is to get straight into the market with around 95% of our revenues coming from our distributors and suppliers. However, if and when we feel we have saturated this channel, we will definitely get more aggressive on the digital platforms.

Compared to our on-the-ground distribution channel, our digital spends are currently negligible. Not more than 5% of our total marketing spends. However, in the next couple of years, we hope to change that considerably as we expand our consumer reach. 

How has the growth been in the last year?
When I started this company, (Lakhani Infinity Footcare) in 2014, I was working with a paid-up capital of around INR 1 lakh, which is a nominal amount for a large-scale operational footwear-manufacturing business. We started selling in 2015 and sold around INR 10 crores worth of shoes in our inaugural year. As we entered 2017, our sales rose to around approximately INR 50 crores. It was only in the last financial year (2018-19) that we generated a revenue of around INR 105 crore.

Another factor that’s driven our business positively last year is the implementation of GST at a macro level. We are selling more of our products now post the GST implementation because there is a check on inter-state smuggling and black marketing. Unlike most other companies suffering because of the demonetization drive and GST implementation, our business has actually grown. Before GST, our sales were around INR 20 crore. Post GST we are on track to hit the INR 200 crore mark.

What is your vision for 2020?
We are looking at both business and consumer-centric growth with an aim to achieve a turnover of INR 200 crore and grow the internal support headcount to 60-70 people. We plan to open 20 stores by 2021. Further, we are on track to close our annual sales number at around INR 160 crores this year (2019-20) and this will be a 60% growth over the previous year. Next year, we are targeting a minimum 40% growth which will help us achieve the INR 200 crore mark. I’ve always worked with the belief that if quality footwear at reasonable prices can be made available to customers, then we can be at par with any global footwear brand.

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