Nike has moved its Indian headquarters - including its marketing office, apparel export base and product design centre - from Delhi to Bangalore.

Satyen Patel, general manager, Nike Southeast Asia told The Times of India that the decision to shift its corporate base to Bangalore was made in order to leverage the strengths of the city.

"Karnataka contributes 70 per cent of the company's apparel exports from India. We've had our export and product design offices in Bangalore for the past two years. A lot of the software development work for Nike's global operations is also done here. And now that we are in the process of giving a fresh thrust to our India business, we felt it would be good to consolidate all our offices in one place," he said.

Patel admitted that India had been a market hitherto not sufficiently addressed by Nike and this new thrust was to establish its commitment to the country, which is one of the three key focus areas for Nike along with China and Brazil.

"These three markets are the ones we absolutely need to grow to remain a powerhouse globally. In India, we will be introducing many more products and a better retailing format," he said.

The $11bn giant is also open to the idea of eventually setting up a full-fledged subsidiary in India. It currently operates through a licensee, Sierra Industrial Enterprises Pvt Ltd, with Nike managing the brand and Sierra handling distribution.

Chief Operating Officer Nike India Hemchandra Javeri said the company, which opened its largest Indian showroom in Bangalore on Tuesday, plans to increase the number of exclusive retail outlets in India from 60 at present to 120 in two years.

"We plan to upgrade the existing stores to the level of the Bangalore one, which not only is a very large store, but also has touch screen kiosks and our complete range of apparel and footwear," Javeri said.
New cricket products will be designed in Bangalore, and the company hopes to take these to other cricket-playing countries such as South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia. "We plan to make India a centre of design excellence for cricket-related items," Patel said.

Patel added that Nike had done $40m worth of apparel exports from India last year and expects to do $75m this year, mainly to Europe, the US and Asia-Pacific.

On women's footwear and apparel, Javeri said it's a market the company will focus on since it has been growing rapidly in India. The range includes workout gear and clothes for yoga and tennis. In shoes too, the company plans to introduce more products for women.