Assessment of Five Competitive Forces of the Indian Apparel Retail Industry: Entry and Expansion Strategies for Foreign Retailers

Manveer K. Mann, Sang-Eun Byun


This study assessed the five forces affecting the Indian apparel retail industry’s competitiveness and discussed entry and expansion strategies for foreign apparel retailers. Despite the rapidly changing Indian market since the deregulated FDI policies, research is lacking about competitive forces that determine the structure and success of the apparel retail industry. By employing Porter’s five force model as the theoretical framework, this study conducted an extensive review of published documents. We found that several forces lower entry barriers for foreign retailers, including deregulated policies, increased shopping malls, and rising income and demand for western brands. However, threats of substitutes are significant due to the proliferation of gray markets and Indians’ preference for unorganized retailers and traditional wear. This study fills the gap in the literature by discussing strategic orientations for foreign apparel retailers to maximize favorable forces and minimize disadvantageous forces in India.

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