The FINANCIAL — Driving Company ltd, incorporating world underwear brands: Bruno Banani, Cervin, Simone Perele, Paasionata, Nicole Olivier, Banana Moon, Valege, Steffy, has already added world famous Austrian brand Wolford, to its portfolio. In 2009 annual turnover of the company was 205,465 GEL, but as Paata Gigauri, founder of Driving Company says, “It is just the beginning”. “2010 should be a profitable year for our company,” Gigauri told The FINANCIAL.
Gigauri says that the brand that we choose determines our taste and mood. The customers of Driving Company are people that look after their image, are accurate and have good taste. “They correctly perceive our main message: your clothing starts from your underwear!”
In his interview with The FINANCIAL Gigauri gave his explanation for the well-known commercial of Bruno Banani, in which participates German Canceller Angela Merkel to support the local company producing underwear and accessories.
“The participation of Mrs. Merkel in a commercial of Bruno Banani is the best example of how one can look after their country, its locally produced products, and enhancement of its export. The head office of Bruno Banani is located in Chemnitz, eastern Germany. Germans did a great deal of work in order to develop this region and government itself, by launching huge investments,” Gigauri said.
Bruno Banani, the first underwear brand in the chain of Driving Company, was named the favorite underwear brand among Georgians by the Golden Brand Awards.
LTD Driving Company brought the world cult brand of underwear Bruno Banani to Georgia in October 2008. “It was a very difficult time for our country’s policy and economy as we had not yet emerged from the shock of the Russian aggression in August 2008. Later we thought to separate the undergarments line of men and women and opened Cervin in March 2009. In June we increased the number of branches of both brands in the trading center Goodwill and at the end of the same year in Tbilisi, on Kostava str.”
Gigauri says that the underwear market in Georgia is still in the process of its formation.
“It will only be finally established when several modern trading centers appear, which will permit customers to choose fashionable underwear within its wide range. The majority of our country’s citizens are still buying underwear in markets, the quality of which is less attractive,” he said.
“At present there are hundreds of underwear brands available but the most important thing for legitimate brands is to maintain their strength against the competition.”
The majority of Driving Company customers are women. Gigauri says that at first men were more active but later it equalized. “Females became more active in the sales figures of our shops as they are characterized by shopping more in general,” Gigauri said.
“The main criteria for us when choosing a brand is the quality of the product and its marketing activity and potential. These two issues always determine future success.”
The suppliers of Driving Company stores are European. But some products are also imported from the USA.
“The brand we offer has two lines: classic and fashion that are limited. Accordingly, customers with more conservative taste generally choose classic clothes and more avant-garde people, so-called fashion followers, choose the trendy line. In any case, both of them are people that look after their image, have good taste and know what they want, correctly perceiving our main message: your clothing style starts from your underwear!”
“Our decision to increase brand numbers will depend on the development of the market. We are bringing now a new brand to the market that is a real diamond – Wolford. This world famous Austrian brand is a successful marketer and manufacturer of hosiery and lingerie.”
“According to the latest world trends women are the lead buyers. They are the target of sales markets.”
Gigauri says the trend of sexy lingerie in increasing among Georgian females, but in moderation. “Sexy clothing is helping women feel more independent and elegant,” he stated.