How the 51-year-old high-street brand echoes the ethos of grandiose and comfort

Bazaar India speaks with president ALDO Group International, Michel Fahmy about comfort, ethics, and expansion.

Harper's Bazaar India

One of the first high-street accessories brands in India that caught the fancy of fashion enthusiasts over a decade ago, ALDO has secured its presence as a market leader since its foray in 2005. And for many, good reasons. Design and innovation are, of course, the most crucial criteria. But more importantly, the 51-year-old brand, originally from Canada, is founded on humane principles of ethics that echo the needs of the modern, evolved buyer.

In an exclusive conversation with Bazaar India, President ALDO Group International, Michel Fahmy shared the very foundations that drive the brand. “The values ALDO undertook when it was launched were love, respect, and integrity. And this is what attracted me the most to the company—it isn’t something we put on a poster, but the way we treat the people we work with, our consumers, the factories we work with, our social compliance, and the way we inspire ourselves for our products. That spirit was the same when we came to India,” Fahmy tells us during his visit to India recently.

Grarwen Heels, ₹11,999, Veleria Tote Bag, ₹12,999, both ALDO

For avid users of the brand, one would be familiar with the delightful designs and exceptional service that have been the mainstay of ALDO for over a decade… aspirational pieces at accessible price points. But behind the footwear and bags (among other creations), is a conscientious effort to be sustainable in a real way. “In Europe or other parts of the world, we actually put a sustainable tag on the shoe, not for the sales, but because it’s the right thing to do…” Fahmy adds.

Recently, the very lovely Janhvi Kapoor was signed on as a brand ambassador—a win, no doubt, as it has driven up sales almost instantaneously.

Prose Shoes, ALDO, ₹18,999

But what is most exciting is the Pillow Walk technology in the women’s shoes, that almost feel like you’re walking on air in the most stylish shoes (yes, you need to actually try them to see for yourself). “Comfort is incredibly important to us,” Fahmy states. “I’m sure you’ve experienced going to an event or party, and you reach a point in the night where you’re like, ‘I’m done’, and remove your shoes to dance barefoot. We decided to create shoes that are super fashionable, dressy, and beautiful, but at the same time ultra-comfortable. The wearability and versatility of the shoe are just as important as trends.”

Deca Sling Back Heeled Sandal, ALDO, ₹9,999

The best part is that there are handbags to match these shoes, too, so your look is looked after from head-to-toe. Even better is that expansion within India is on the cards for ALDO, from new markets to their digital presence. And while Fahmy keeps us excited over the future, he leaves us with a parting shot: “We’re working on it, and I’m looking forward to it…you’ll hear more from us soon!”