Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Dinesh Suitings : Take the World in Your Stride

Brand : Dinesh
Company : Shri Dinesh Mills

Brand Analysis Count : 281

Dinesh Suitings is a heritage brand which commanded much share of mind in the late 1980's. This 7 decade old brand may be a forgotten brand for the new liberalized generation. The brand is a sad story of how a premium textile brand lost its way amidst a rush of competition.
Dinesh is a brand famous for its Worsted Suitings. The brand shot to limelight with its association with the Cricketing Icon Sunil Gavaskar. Sunil Gavaskar endorsed this brand for more than 11 years which I think is a record in the world of celebrity endorsements.
Sunil Gavaskar was in his prime when he endorsed this brand. Luckily for Dinesh, Gavaskar fitted perfectly into the brand's persona. Gavaskar was a unlikely celebrity to endorse a suitings because of his frame : Short and Stout. How ever Gavaskar had a charmed which worked well for this brand
I still remember two TVC of Dinesh featuring Sunil Gavaskar : One featuring him playing baseball which hits the icecream of a fellow and another one with an Egyptian Mummy ( my favorite) . The brand had the famous tagline " Take the World in Your Stride.... Dinesh " . The brand was positioned as a premium stylish brand.
But along came the competition from brands like Raymonds and Vimal. These brands had more financial muscle and more importantly had the production capacity and product range. Dinesh Mills could not match the product range and the capacity of these heavyweights. So slowly Dinesh Mills began to concentrate on being a supplier rather than a marketer.
Dinesh also faced the issue of its brand ambassador losing the cricketing form and getting into issues. This had a rub off with the brand since Dinesh was highly associated with Sunil Gavaskar.Also Gavaskar was becoming too old . The brand tried to change track by roping in Bollywood Macho Jackie Shroff as the brand ambassador. But Jackie and the brand did not match.
Watch the TVC : Jackie with Dinesh
Then slowly the brand went into silence so did its market share.
Now suddenly out of blue, Dinesh is making some interesting noise in the media . The brand now have found a new Saviour in Bollywood Actor Akshaye Khanna. The TVC featuring Akshaye is already on air. The brand retains the original tagline and expects that Akshaye can rejuvenate this failing brand.
Why Dinesh has chosen Akshaye as its brand ambassador is an intriguing question to me . Akshaye has never been a successful brand ambassador. He had a roller coaster ride in bollywood and I have always seen him in funky outfits. However the brand may be looking to break away from its past. But as always Celebrity endorsements alone can never lift up a brand. That too with a celebrity like Akshaye, one can never be sure how he is going to deliver in his field.
I think that Dinesh's rejuvenation effort is halfhearted. The brand feels unsure whether it could fight against the large number of brands aiming for a share of market. The company feels that it should stay in the comfort zone of being a supplier rather than a hardcore marketer.