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Building a Republic for NEXT-gen Bass-addicts

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In today’s day and age where the audio lifestyle Industry is flooded with different brands, some well-established and some not, it has become very difficult for existing as well as newer brands to stand-out within the market and make their presence felt. In such times, there is one brand which is well-known and a cut above the rest – Nu Republic

Nu Republic – a homegrown wearables brand, established in 2018 has been growing by leaps and bounds in the audio accessories and lifestyle Industry. It initially focused on the online D-2-C segment before branching out and making their presence felt in the offline markets.

The brand is led by a team of diverse, multi-cultural team of professionals from various walks of life. It is growing at a very rapid pace and has cracked the code of the cluttered market. “Since the beginning, we have focused on three things which are a part of our design philosophy – Technology, Emotion and Design” says Mr. Jitendra Saini (COO)

“We have always aimed to be an aspirational brand for the common folk – something that they can look up to and really feel that they want to get their hands on. All these things coupled with products at attractive price points is what has helped us to stand-out in this cluttered market” says Mr. Suprith (RSM)

While the brand grew exponentially online, the team also realized that there was a need to focus their efforts offline too. The internet penetration rate of India stands at 49% currently, which means more than half the market is present offline.

“Nu Republic, as a brand, aims to be present everywhere when it comes to consumer electronics. Most of our consumer segment is active digitally due to which the bulk of our advertising is online. But sometimes consumers might want to walk into their neighbourhood stores or go to a marketplace and sometimes they’d want to come to our website. Our idea is for the product to be available wherever the consumers want it to be” says Jitendra

“A lot of our marketing and merchandising is already visible in the market as we aim to solidify our presence in all offline marketplaces. We have always taken unique lifestyle models in all our marketing campaigns to showcase our brand as unique and aspirational” says Suprith

Nu Republic does have plans to build some experience stores offline, but the brand’s first priority is to be present at all leading modern trade and electronic stores. Interestingly, despite the fact that there was the COVI-19 pandemic which affected supply chain globally, the brand managed to navigate the situation very well. “In times like these, having strong relationships with the right partners tremendously boosts your business. Our partners, both offline and online, recognise the potential of Nu Republic and how much farther it can grow” says Jitendra

The government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative was also super helpful as it helped established several vendors inside the country itself for manufacturing and distribution.

In India, the average audio consumer has a specific set of features that he/she looks for in every product. They are:

  • Features – BT Calling & Music, HD Display, health tracking features such as SpO2 monitoring, heart rate tracking, steps tracking and much more
  • Pricing – Every product has a certain price range and so, the price has to be decided carefully as it could be the difference between a best-seller and a failure
  • Brand Name – The brand backing the product is probably the single most-defining characteristic behind the product.

“Today, the market has become so saturated that a lot of brands sell a variant of the same product under different names, hence, these three characteristics become important. It can make or break the brand” says Suprith

“I think any audio product has to be a good-market fit i.e., it should not be too different or too generic in order to make its presence felt in the market” says Jitendra

In the past couple of years, it has been seen that the smartwatches category is growing Y-O-Y at a rate of 145% and it has become the second-most popular category after TWS and headphones.

To capitalize on this trend, Nu Republic launched two new smartwatches – Bold 2 & Creed Ultra which went on to become best-sellers in this category. “Creed Ultra, especially, is a combination of style and performance and is highly-valued by both the massy and classy crowd. We aim to launch 20+ smartwatches by the end of this year to further cement ourselves in this segment” says Jitendra

The brand follows a strong omni-channel strategy, with its products available across leading online marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Paytm, TATA Cliq and more.

Suprith says “We are also available in more than 10,000 retail outlets and large-format retail stores such as Sangeetha Mobiles, Aadishwar, Supreme Mobiles, Pai International, SS Mobiles, The Chennai Mobiles, CELEKT Mobiles, Big C, LOT, Happi Mobiles, PhoneWale, Cell Point and a lot more, with over 100+ distributor presence pan India. Some of our premium partners include Shweta Group, Radiant Distributors and Whatnot”

The brand has planned a lot of exciting things ahead!

In the short term, they are on their way to consolidate 100+ authorized distributors across India, covering more than 10,000+ retailers in total.” Our strategy is to offer good quality products at value-for-money prices and we are pursuing aggressively marketing ourselves in Digital & Print Media” says Suprith

Alongside that Nu Republic has been successfully listed on Blinkit and INCS (Indian Naval Canteen Service) as well. “Both Blinkit and INCS represent a large portion of the market that was untapped till now and being listed on both of these fronts could drive our revenue further up which would definitely benefit the company, as a whole” says Jitendra

In terms of online expansion, Nu Republic has restarted operations on Amazon, Flipkart, our own website and several other online retailers. “As several tier-2 and tier-3 cities become increasingly comfortable with online shopping, we believe we need to be present for these folks at all times” says Suprith

So far, the brand is only present in India but the aim is to expand internationally as well, next year onwards.

Nu Republic aims to become the No. 1 wearable brand in India, achieving complete dominance in both online and offline trade. As the Founder & CEO – Mr. Ujjwal Sarin rightly says – we are not here to merely test the waters but create resounding waves!

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