Saira Awan Malik of Studio by TCS is a force in the business of fashion e-commerce

June 21, 2017

Saira Awan Malik of Studio by TCS is a force in the business of fashion e-commerce

SAIRA AWAN MALIK

of Studio by tcs is a force in the business of fashion e-commerce.

 

This year TCS launched a unique groundbreaking move into the digital retail sphere with Studio by TCS. Here is an exclusive chat with the brains behind the operation, Studio by TCS founder, Saira Awan.

 

Tell us a bit about your background?

I am a lawyer turned entrepreneur. I practiced corporate law for six years at an American firm in London before joining TCS, which is my family business. I am a Karachiite to the core, but have lived in London for the last 11 years.

 

What brought you to Studio by TCS?

When I joined TCS, I was keen to focus on developing our business internationally. TCS is proud to have served Pakistanis within the country, from all major towns and cities to the smallest, most remote villages, for the last 34

years, and we now want to offer services to nonresident Pakistanis all over the world. TCS is committed to the highest standard of customer service and one of our core values is to make life simple, easy and convenient for our customers.

Studio by TCS aims to do exactly that. Studio by TCS was set up to address the overwhelming demand for Pakistani fabrics and fashion amongst the Pakistani, and indeed the entire South Asian, diaspora.

As a busy professional living in London, I often found that I had no time to buy clothes for my trips to Pakistan. Once I was there, I didn’t want to waste time going shopping, and as a result, I had to rely on my friends’ and sometimes my mother’s wardrobe. As we know, necessity is often the mother of invention, and Studio by TCS was designed to help people like me who

constantly need desi clothes but who don’t live in Pakistan or who don’t have the time or the energy to go out shopping.

 

How is Studio by TCS changing the retail landscape in Pakistan?

Studio by TCS hopes to be a game-changer in the world of fashion e-commerce. By combining the logistics strength of TCS with a fashionfocused, high-end online store, we hope to offer a seamless service not just to our customers but to our designers and retailers too. Designers and retailers have hitherto accessed international customers in traditional ways, i.e., by participating in fashion shows and having exhibitions. We offer them full marketing and logistics support, and allow them to reach customers all over the world without lifting a finger. As we all know, the future of retail is digital and we have seen the success of international fashion websites such as Net-a-Porter. We hope to emulate this success and create visibility for Pakistani fashion on the global stage.

 

‘Studio by TCS hopes to be a game-changer in the world of fashion e-commerce.

By combining the logistics strength of TCS with a fashion-focused, high-end

online store, we hope to offer a seamless service not just to our customers but

to our designers and retailers too’

 

Does Studio by TCS deliver internationally?

Of course! We do free shipping and deliver to every country in the world. We offer customer services support and complete visibility/tracking so that our customers know exactly when they will receive their package.

 

What is the current state of online retail in Pakistan and how is Studio by TCS changing that?

The online retail sector in Pakistan is going through significant transformation and the e-commerce industry is witnessing exponential growth. New websites are coming up and women in particular are increasingly becoming used to shopping online. Within Pakistan, I would say that our main value-add is that we are making leading designers and brands accessible to people in second-tier cities where they do not have a presence. Furthermore, trust and reliability are big concerns for online shoppers

and people know that TCS will never compromise on that. We have served with integrity and passion for over three decades,

and we will continue to do so as we diversify into new businesses such as this one.

 

Do you only deal with clothes or are there plans to diversify?

We offer clothes and accessories at the moment, although we may diversify in response to consumer demand. Within clothing, we offer stitched and unstitched fabric, casual prêt, formal prêt, wedding wear and menswear. Also

on offer is trendy, modest fashion, which is very high in demand both within Pakistan and internationally, and accessories such as scarves, bags and jewellery. The important thing to note is that we are a curated website. We select the designers we want to work with and we carefully pick and choose pieces from their collections. We have a design aesthetic that we want to preserve which is why we are not a platform for every fashion designer that wants to access the international market. We want to maintain this exclusivity because we want to ensure that our customers get the best quality.

 

How did the idea come to fruition?

My colleague Ali Leghari, who is a TCS veteran, and I, conceptualised Studio by TCS last autumn and started working on it at that time. We launched Studio by TCS in February 2017 with the help of a small but dedicated team. The Studio team deserves special mention here – Sehr Ahmed, Ibad-ul-Islam, Hira Khalil, Raheel Ahmed and Danish Khan, whom I wouldlike to thank for their passion and commitment. It is really because of them that we have had somuch success in such a short span of time.

 

Who is the Studio by TCS customer?

Studio by TCS has a number of customers in Pakistan to whom we offer Cash of Delivery, but our primary target market is South Asians (Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis) worldwide. The Studio customer can be just about anyone: the housewife in Bradford, the lawyer in New York or the second-generation South Asian in Toronto. If you are interested in Pakistani fashion, you have come to the right place!

 

 

Desi fashion, Pakistani fashion, online shopping, Sana Safinaz, Indian clothes




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