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Aug 4, 2008

Aadi Sales

In the face of inflation, people try and make the most out of discount offers during Aadi season.Inflation and the resultant soaring price rise have dampened the spirit of Aadi discount sales this year. Leading textile showrooms pointed out that there was a dip in the number of customers stepping in for Aadi purchases as well as the volume of sales this year compared to the previous year.Owing to the hefty discounts offered for clearing the existing stock so as to bring in fresh stock for the Deepavali festival, there used to be a year-on-year growth in the previous years.

But, this year the growth rate is missing and, in fact, sale volumes in the last 16-17 days have not been really encouraging, says Senthil, owner of a textile showroom. The dampened spirit was evident from two counts, the number of customers visiting the shops had come down by 10 to 15 per cent and even those coming for buying clothes have reduced their purchase volume, says the owner of one of the leading textile showrooms on Cross Cut Road known for brisk business throughout the year.



A section of the customers who had come for Aadi purchases on Cross Cut Road said “normally we used to buy dress materials in Aadi sales and keep it either for Deepavali or for occasions such as birthdays, wedding anniversaries.” “Given the deficits in the monthly budget because of the soaring prices, we have decided to buy as and when required. Earlier, we used to buy a minimum of three sets of dresses for every member of the family, but now we stop with just buying one. Even that was because of the discounts we get and the sentimental attachment to the purchases in Aadi discount sale.”



A random cursory glance of the Aadi sale pattern in the core business hubs of Coimbatore such as Oppanakkara Street, Cross Cut Road and DB Road revealed that Aadi discounts ranged from 5 per cent to 50 per cent. While on branded dressing items that come with a fixed Maximum Retail Price (MRP) tag, the textile showrooms have constraints and offer only 10 per cent discount whereas in non-branded dress items, the discounts range at 20, 25 and 30 per cent depending on the product, says a leading textile merchant on Cross Cut Road.


But dress items with stains and minor damages classified as seconds are sold at 50 per cent. Five per cent discount was offered on inner garments, kerchiefs and lungis.While public response has remained encouraging all along but for this year, there were two schools of thoughts decrying the Aadi discount sale as an eyewash. Priya, working as an executive in a private manufacturing facility, says it was nothing but a stock clearance sale and the quality of the materials was very poor. She added that showrooms come with fresh stock for Deepavali.



Secretary of Coimbatore Consumer Cause (CCC), K. Kathirmathiyon dubs the Aadi discount sale as stock clearance sale. “Has anybody bought any dress material before the sale and the same product during Aadi sale for comparing the price.” If at all such a test was done, buyers would realise that the discount would be hardly 5 per cent as against the tall claims of 25 to 30 per cent, he said. Lakshmi, a managerial staff in a private manufacturing facility, disputes these theories and says that Aadi sale was not a recent phenomenon and had been in vogue for quite sometime.


Nithya, a house maker, says that if at all there used to be any surplus money after the monthly expenses, then we take a call on Aadi sales and at the most we would buy one set of dress for every member of the family. Because, there would be another round of purchase for Deepavali when there would be more cash flow. Jaiwanth Kumar, a marketing executive in a firm, says that Aadi sale is the parlance used by textile showrooms while dealers of branded garments call it a sale or offer. With the Aadi sale not witnessing any growth and showing the impact of inflation, the textile shops wait for the festival of lights to brighten up their business prospects.

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