New store: It’s Monsoon season in Lahore, Pakistan

LAHORE: Team A Ventures — leading international brand retailer in Pakistan — proudly opens a second outlet of UK brand Monsoon at Mall 1 in Lahore, following a successful launch in Karachi.

Keeping its focus intact on high-quality fabric and elegant cuts, this award-winning fashion brand maintains its position in the higher-end bracket in the list of expensive high-street brands in London — leaving behind popular labels such as H&M, Zara and Miss Selfridge.

Also the parent company of well-known brand Accessorize, Monsoon has successfully made its way to the top of Lahori shopaholics’ list of stores to raid this season. “As a brand, it focuses on the working woman,” states Anushka Paracha, owner of Monsoon, Pakistan. “This is primarily why the cuts are conservative and wearable, specifically in Pakistan.”

Paracha speaks to The Express Tribune about Monsoon’s target market: “Generally our target audience includes women of the ages 25 and above, along with new mothers [with one child]. However our clientele so far includes women between the ages of 30 to 40 — I feel this age group has the buying power; the ability to afford this expensive apparel.”

In a suppressive society like Pakistan, there is a large gap in the fashion world and the practical world. Women abroad might prefer shorter hemlines in their dresses and enjoy wearing skirts but this is not the norm in our country — especially for those shopping at western outlets on a regular basis. Wearability is a crucial element when it comes to fashion and cannot be ignored by brand retailers while bringing western brands to the east.

Alina Qureshi of Studio Avant Garde (a team of international PR specialists) also present at the launch, comments on the brand’s success: “Surprisingly the brand has been very successful in Karachi despite being a little pricey — people are buying our products regardless.”

“Although they haven’t brought as many accessories and products as one would have hoped, people are still enjoying their [limited] stock,” she continues. “The 20 per cent opening-discount is definitely pushing people to shop here.”

This new outlet may be small in size with a limited stock, but the franchisee still hasn’t failed to provide Lahore with a taste of different segments and collections from the international brand — from the trendy ‘Monsoon Fusion’ collection to the adorable ‘Children’ apparel, the store has a tad bit of everything.

“I loved the store and the clothes,” says a young customer Zara Bandial. “There is more awareness amongst people these days [of international brands and western fashion]. Therefore, such stores will do well in Lahore.”