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COOL COLORS: Redefining mid-segment fashion for modern men

In a country like India where a large chunk of the population belongs to the middle class, the need for an affordable, value-for-money brand is essential. Cool Colors, the flagship brand of Bafna Clothing, has been thriving as a mid-segment brand since its inception in 2002. As a men’s casualwear brand, Cool Colors understands what it truly takes to be a man. It has imbibed perfection and style in its products, creating masterpieces for modern men.

Cool Colors has grown its business across the nation, thriving with a pan India as well as international presence. The brand is present in over 25 cities in the country, with 3500+ menswear and family outlets.

The brand has more than 20 years of business experience with 300+ modern trade stores pan India. It is also present in International markets such as the Middle East, Singapore and Sri Lanka.

In an exclusive interview with IMAGES Business of Fashion’s Kajal Ahuja, the Managing Director of Bafna Clothing Pvt. Ltd, Praveen Bafna shares insights about the brand’s journey and expansion plans.

Please tell us about the journey of Cool Colors and Bafna Clothing.
My family has been in the clothing business since 1979 with our third having taken over the business now. We started Bafna Clothing company in 2002 and soon launched our brand, Cool Colors. It started with only shirts but the collection soon expanded to include multiple categories like t-shirts, blazers, etc. Today, Cool Colors is a complete men’s wardrobe brand. It has been 22 years and we are still growing.

COOL COLORS: Redefining mid-segment fashion for modern menWhat sets Cool Colors apart from other clothing brands in its category?
There are three segments in the clothing market – premium, mid, and economy. We call ourselves a mid-segment brand. 75% of the population in India is the middle class who can afford mid-segment brands because they want to wear a good product at a reasonable price. We cater to that 75% population as we provide value for money at Cool Colors.

Please tell us about your growth strategy and your expansion plans for FY 25.
If you look at India, it is growing at 7%. And if you see the overall industrial growth, it is not more than 10%. So year-on-year, we cannot grow more than 10% organically, but we can grow if we add more products. This is why we started another segment called the Export Division. We are now expecting 2% additional growth compared to 2020, which translates to 10% year-on-year organic growth. Further looking at our expansion in categories and areas, I am assuming that we may grow at a 20% rate.

Tell us about the range of products that you have.
We offer shirts, trousers, denim, t-shirts, blazers – a complete men’s wardrobe collection. In shirts, we offer all the categories including twill, Oxford, Copley, cotton by linen, and filafill. So, a complete fashion brand.

COOL COLORS: Redefining mid-segment fashion for modern menWhat geographies is your brand most popular in?
We are very strong in South India – Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Pondicherry as well as other cities in the South are where we doing very well. We are also very strong in Maharashtra, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. Our main focus is now to expand in the Eastern belt of India.

What are your plans for opening exclusive brand outlets in tier I and II cities?
Since last year, we have been focusing on EBOs. We have around 8-10 stores but we are not planning to open any in tier I cities anytime soon. We are only focusing on tiers II and III, where the demand for our products aka value-for-money products is high. The ROI based on the expenses per store will always be flexible in tiers II and III since rent is too high in tier 1 cities.

How will this contribute to your brand’s visibility and growth?
For any brand, having EBOs is a must. Without them, even if you are doing good business, no brand will not be visible. Along with EBOs, a good online presence is a must. We have been focusing on both these areas for the last two years and we are looking to grow very fast in the next 2-3 years.

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