Bata has been a household name for footwear for many generations. Many children have begun their first footsteps wearing the successful brand’s “Bubblegummer” shoes with flashing lights. Come August, when school would commence, Bata would print advertisements of “back to school” shoes with a “free tennis ball”.
Now the brand has launched its third flagship store at Schon Circle, near Do Talwar (Two Swords) in Clifton, Karachi on the evening of November 30.
Bata has 51 stores located in the city of Karachi alone and over 350 outlets across Pakistan. The brand’s first store opened in Lahore in 1942.
The idea of establishing a two-level Bata flagship store came into being a while ago. Sharing these details Faisal Mahmood, Area Manager for Bata Sales in Karachi, said, “Earlier on, we under-estimated the value of our customer, we never realised our importance nor the fact that how much they value us. However, today the perception has changed very much. We now want an entire family to shop at our store; our target market now includes the entire family unit.”
Keeping the family aspect in mind as well as the rising inflation, Bata is as cheap as ever. The ‘Bubblegummer’ line for children starts from Rs229 and the priciest going up to ‘Ambassador’ (formal line for men) touching the mark of Rs4,999.
The lower level of the store offers men’s collection of shoes, ranging from athletic and casual to formal, while the upper level offers ladies’ and children’s collection which includes a formal collection ‘North Star’ as well as a comfortable line called ‘Comfit’ (comprising of flip flops and sandals) and fashionable line called ‘Marie Claire’ (which has pumps and ballet shoes).
Customer Mustafa Ham-dani was spotted shopping for school shoes, on the upper level, with his wife and four-and-a-half-year-old daughter Raiha. When Hamdani was asked as to why he opted for Bata, when other high-end brands are available in the market, he said, “This is one place where I came as a child and even still do today. I rely on the name as much as my parents did.
Hence, my wife and I are here to purchase some comfortable school shoes for our daughter.”
Published in The Express Tribune, December 2nd, 2011.
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