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Footwear retailer Khadim’s in talks to raise $12.7M from Reliance Equity Advisors 

Khadim’s is the dominant Indian player in the value segment of footwear business and is especially strong in eastern India.

Kolkata-based footwear manufacturer and retailer Khadim India Ltd, which runs its operations under the brand Khadim’s, is in advanced talks with private equity player Reliance Equity Advisors to raise Rs 80 crore ($12.7 million), a source familiar with the development told VCCircle.

Another source said that initially the firm was out to raise Rs 100 crore, but had differences over valuation with various potential investors and has therefore cut the size of funding.

Separate e-mail queries sent to Khadim’s spokesperson and Reliance Equity Advisors’ Partner, Ramesh Venkat for comments on the deal did not elicit any response till the time of publishing this article.

Khadim’s is the dominant Indian player in the value segment of footwear business and is especially strong in eastern India. The group entered the footwear business after acquiring a Kolkata-based firm five decades ago. It both manufacturers its own footwear and also sources from others for its retail venture.

The firm claims a footprint of more than 600 retail outlets across the country, many of which are run by the company itself. Its key presence is in eastern and southern India, but the firm has been trying to make its mark in northern and western India as well. The company has also forayed into other retail formats including a super store chain called Khadim’s Khazana and jewellery retailing through Khadim’s Egaro.

The privately held profitable firm has annual revenues of over Rs 400 crore.

Two other listed peer group firms are Bata and Sreeleathers. Bata, the market leader, is over four times the size in revenues. Sreeleathers, which is another value footwear retailer, is much smaller in size. Both these firms have higher profit margins compared to Khadim’s.

Interestingly, Khadim’s had planned to go public in 2008. As per its original plan, the issue was expected to hit the market in the second half of the year, but the stock market crash swept away the proposed issue.

Among other deals in the footwear industry, Future Ventures recently acquired 33 per cent stake in KFC Shoemaker for an undisclosed sum. Future Ventures also has a previous JV with UK’s C&J Clark International, called Clark Future Shoes.

According to a 2012 report by PwC, the Indian footwear market is estimated to be worth $3.94 billion and is expected to grow to $6.89 billion by 2015.

Khadim India Ltd. (formerly Khadim Chain Stores Ltd.) operates as a footwear retailer in India. It offers footwear for men, women and children. The firm also offers accessories including bags, belts, wallets, socks, mobile cover, polish and brush, bristles and mobile pouch. Khadim India Ltd. was founded in 1965 and is based in Kolkata, West Bengal.

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