Lakme Fashion Week and Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week: Fission in Indian Fashion

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG142
Case Length : 17 Pages
Period : 2000-2006
Organization : FDCI, Lakme Ltd, Wills Lifestyle
Pub Date : 2006
Teaching Note : Available
Countries : India
Industry : Textile and Garments

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The Split

FDCI entered into discussions with Lakme for a fresh contract. However, the negotiations were derailed when the FDCI tripled the sponsorship fee. Newspaper reports suggested that Lakme found the asking rate unreasonable and 'unviable'. Soon, Lakme hinted that it might organize a fashion week on its own. Last-minute efforts were made to mend fences between Lakme and FDCI. Jha said, "We did try to save this situation even at the last minute by accepting to talk to Lakme again. This was absolutely in the interest of designers and keeping the industry together... But we were not dealing with large hearts elsewhere."

Lakme, perhaps, was determined to break away from FDCI. Company officials said that they were "looking to create a new event that integrates India into the international fashion community."...

The Fallout

The break-up between FDCI and Lakme caused quite a sensation in Indian fashion circles, with designers, buyers, and the media choosing sides and speculating on the after-effects of the split. Also, the period after the announcement by Lakme saw intense activity with FDCI sending out circulars to its members asking them to stick with the 'official' fashion week. The circular said - "We are very clear in our advice to our members that you must participate only in the India Fashion Week organized by the FDCI in Delhi."

The circular seemed to have stirred up a hornet's nest with allegations and counter-allegations being exchanged between the warring groups. Responding to the circular, Lakme/IMG sent a letter to the designers which stated - "Barring designers from participating in another trade event, we believe, is against the law...

The All-New Lakme Fashion Week

Lakme and IMG spared no effort to make their fashion week a success. The inaugural LFW was to include new initiatives like 'Emerging Designer Category' and 'GenNext' to provide an opportunity for talented young designers to showcase their talent in front of the who's who of fashion. For this, an advisory board comprising several prominent personalities of the fashion industry was constituted in early 2006. The permanent members of the board, together with fashion professionals specifically invited for the selection meetings, formed a National Selection Panel (NSP) to select up to six promising designers, who had never before participated in any fashion week, for the GenNext show...

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