-By Ankita Dutta.
The collaboration between Reliance Retail and Shein covering the sourcing, production, and sale of Shein items has been given the green light by the Indian government.
After being banned in India in 2020 due to the heightened tensions at the Galwan border between India and China, Shein, the Chinese fashion giant, is set to make a comeback in India through a strategic partnership with Reliance Retail, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal. Under the new partnership, Reliance Retail and Shein will collaborate on sourcing, manufacturing, and retail of Shein products in India.
As per Shein’s website, the US, India, Brazil, and Australia are the primary sources of Shein-based products. Amidst the ongoing controversy surrounding the cotton sourcing by Shein in the US, it is anticipated that the fashion company will procure fabrics for its production processes from local small-scale enterprises in India. This move will help the fast fashion brand diversify its supply chain and tap into India’s growing consumer market.
It is anticipated that the collaboration will lead to the establishment of physical retail outlets, alongside a digital footprint, potentially through the Ajio platform of Reliance. Moreover, a production hub in India to supply to the Middle East may also be in the pipeline.
When asked for comment, Reliance Retail declined to confirm the partnership. Founded in Nanjing, China, in 2012, Shein has relocated its global headquarters to China and boasts a reach over 150 countries. By utilizing manufacturing technology that fulfils demand instantaneously, the firm can connect suppliers to their supply chain, resulting in a reduction of obsolete inventory and providing cost-effective merchandise to clients globally.
Shein’s industry-leading on-demand production and ability to digitally connect the supplier ecosystem have been critical in its global expansion, including manufacturing in Turkey, warehouses in Poland, and distribution centers in the US.
In the new funding round, Shein secured investment that places the firm’s valuation at around 66% of its $100 billion evaluation of the previous year. Meanwhile, Reliance Retail, with more than 15,000 stores across India selling a range of products including fashion and groceries, is a major player in India’s economy.