Mahesh M, Chief Executive Officer, Creaticity speaks about the mall’s core focus on home décor and furniture and the strategic shift from being a space enabler to a solution provider
Creaticity (formally known as Ishanya Mall) stands out due to its unique positioning—a lifestyle and home decor destination, housing leading brands in the category, offering a wide range of home products and experiences.
The 3,50,000 sq. ft. mall holds the distinction of being the only such centre in the country with 2 lakh sq. ft. space dedicated to the home category through HomeCity, which offers 52,000 home décor ideas, over 10,000 products, more than 100 national and global brands and exclusive brand stores.
Mahesh M, Chief Executive Officer, Creaticity talks about five successful years of the new identity, trends in home décor and the unique proposition of the shopping centre.
How have things been for Creaticity since its rebranding and makeover as a furniture mall?
Completing 16 years as a mall is a great achievement. The rebranding of Ishanya to Creaticity in 2018 was historic. Since then, the journey has been all about creating the right mix across categories like living, bed, dining, kitchen and accessories, products and most importantly the brands (local Pune-based brands, regional, national, and international as well).
The second part of the story is about educating the customer. So, we created a platform called EduCity, which enlightens the consumers on what to buy, by sharing information on aspects like fabric, design, and construction. We started sharing a lot of information via Idea Circle, and Easy Peasy Home Hacks so that customers know what they are buying and keep referring to and preferring us over others.
How are you improving this experience?
The big transformative shift which we have been doing in the last five years is from being a space enabler to becoming a solutions provider. Today, Creaticity is an experience cum display exhibition centre.
We introduced Creaticity Branded Interiors (CRBI) in 2023, where the buyer can get all the information about space planning, interior design, product selection, support, and last-mile delivery, with the help of technology.
We have Creaticity as Pune’s creative Living Campus, which has a representation of various national and global brands and products within the space. With multiple ‘Lookbooks’ created for living, dining, bed, and kitchen accessories, customers can scan and get the visual looks on their phones and know about the details, and they can customize and personalise them with a hassle-free experience.
By this, we are ensuring transparency, reliability and assurance for the consumers.
Give us a brief of brands present at Creaticity.
Creaticity houses more than 100 brands, both national and international featuring furniture, furnishings and home décor, covering an area close to 1,70,000 sq. ft. We have configured the entire space and have studios of different brands. The largest store size is around 18,000-20,000 sq. ft. The store/studio size starts at around 1000 sq. ft and goes up to 20,000 sq. ft.
Some of the brands at Creaticity are Pepperfry, Urban Ladder, Design Café, Wooden Street, and Durian. Wakefit, Arancia, Ashley Furniture Home Store, @home, F&F, Evok, Home Sukh, Houslife, Mint Homez, Shirkes Kitchens and more. The International brands are Plank and Weave, Febal Casa, Wiemann, Alf Italia, and Stosa Cucine from Italy.
Which category gets the maximum traction?
At Creaticity, both the prestige and premium segments are up on the popularity charts. The prestige category is for the consumers for whom price and quality are critical or top importance. For premium buyers, it’s the design which is the priority followed by quality and then price. Whether it is an international or Indian brand, the popularity is based on customer needs from prestige to premium. We have lately classified and segmented in such a way that international brands are placed as premium and domestic and national brands are placed in the prestige category.
How has the market been after the pandemic?
As per the latest industry research, luxury living has been the new megatrend, followed by smart and ethical living in the furniture and home décor category. We are witnessing consumers investing in premium brands, for living a complete lifestyle. However, the prestige segment is completely, by far, the largest selling category.
The prestige zone will always be dictated by inflation, and luxury is going to be a steady growth, provided by the right audience and the right solutions.
How many new brands opened in 2023?
In 2023, we have opened around 8-10 brands. Wooden Street, La-Z-Boy, Little Nap, Febal Casa, and Alf Italia are some of the names which came on board last year.
Tell us more about the mall’s offerings.
Home décor is our core category represented by HomeCity. The other auxiliary categories to which we have given equal importance are FoodCity, EduCity, WorkCity, PlayCity and EventCity. In FoodCity, we have restaurants, restaurants, and nightclubs.
We don’t have QSRs as we are more into casual and fine dining. There is a 1500-seater coworking centre, which helps bring the footfall due to the IT companies located in the area. At PlayCity, we have a unique space such as Skyjumper and High Octane. At Skyjumper, we have Pune’s first trampoline park, spread across 15,000 sq. ft. with multiple games such as Leap of Faith, Vertical Slide & Ninja Circuit.
High Octane is an outdoor arena with a 5,000 sq. ft. area for go-karting enthusiasts to explore, bond, and challenge their limits. At EventCity, we have theatres, art galleries, a banquet hall and a seminar hall to host events. These events are mostly around the core categories, The EventCity calendar helps in getting the right kind of audience to the centre.
What are your expansion plans?
For us, expansion is all about category expansion and product-level expansion. We are going to be a single destination for the home décor category. We want to be the magnet or hub to which we can draw our customers.
So, our expansion will largely happen around categories within the existing space. We will expand in terms of our international offerings. We are in talks with some interesting brands from Europe to bring them to the Indian market.