PASSAGE TO INDIA: To celebrate the launch in India of her Bisou Bisou brand — courtesy of a licensing deal with Reliance Trends — designer Michele Bohbot organized a fashion show in Mumbai, appeared in stores and spoke at Indian fashion universities. The Reliance agreement includes the immediate launch of 33 Bisou Bisou in-store shops, followed by the rollout of the brand to 100 department stores, with more expansion in the future.

“I’ve been following the product, and quality and print direction,” Bohbot said. “I’m happy, but not thrilled yet with the product. That’s why I came here with my assistant. They [Reliance] have a price point. It’s very difficult to give what I want to give my customer. The choice of material and fabrication is very limited. You have to be very creative.” But, she added, “We’re gonna make it.”

This story first appeared in the August 27, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Bohbot hopes the Reliance business will “be as big as [J.C.] Penney’s,” where Bisou Bisou is sold. “My goal is to make [India] huge and big and expand to China.”

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On Friday, Bohbot held a fashion show during Lakmé India Fashion Week in Mumbai. The 17 models in the show included Priyanka Chopra, the highest-paid Bollywood actress and a former Miss World, who walked the runway in an outfit Bohbot designed for her.

“I’m enjoying all the spirituality of India,” said Bohbot, an avid yogini, who took five of well-known senior practitioner Birjoo Mehta’s yoga classes and did Ayurveda.

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