Sub-brands must also carry the company logo

Global single-brand retailers such as Marks & Spencer and Brooks Brothers will be required to mark all sub-brand products sold in their Indian stores with their company logo, in addition to the sub-brand logo.

“While the government has clarified that single-brand foreign retailers in the country will be free to sell sub-brands, provided they obtain approval for each product and category of products sold, the retailer’s logo must appear on each product ”a senior official in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) said Activity area.

This means that if British company Marks & Spencer wants to sell products from sub-brands such as Autograph, Collezione, North Coast and Blue Harbor in its stores in India, those products must also display the M&S logo, the official explained.

The government allowed up to 51% FDI in single-brand retailing in 2011 and raised the cap to 100% in September 2012, but it was not clear whether a single-brand retailer was allowed to sell owned products. to other brands. .

This prompted the finance ministry to write to DIPP to ask if M&S, which is in India in a joint venture with the Reliance brands, had flouted the rules by selling sub-brands in its Indian stores.

DIPP then provided further clarification through a press briefing last month stating that single-brand retail applications must specifically state the products and product categories that are offered to be sold under. one brand. Any addition to the product or product categories would require further government approval.

The press note also made it clear that a non-resident entity, whether or not it owns the mark, will be allowed to sell a specific mark through a legally valid agreement with the trademark owner.

India received a plethora of applications from overseas single-brand retailers. Swedish furniture maker IKEA’s 10,500 crore FDI proposal was approved earlier this year and the company is set to open stores. Other approved proposals include those from UK shoe retailer Pavers England, US luxury clothing retailer Brooks Brothers and Italian jewelry company Damiani.

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