No nudes may not be good news for die-hard fans of Playboy but that's the way the celebrated adult-male focused brand is going as it gears to launch a chain of clubs, bars and cafes in India.
Considered among the world's top 25 brands, Playboy, whose merchandise builds on the popularity built by the magazine famous for revealing centrespreads, will operate in India through PB Lifestyle Ltd, which is an arm of Playboy Enterprises International Inc, the hospitality and merchandising business of the empire built by Hugh Hefner.
PB Lifestyle plans to set up eight Playboy clubs in India over a period of three years in its first phase and have 120 clubs, bars and cafes in 10 years.
The promoters of PB Lifestyle, Parag Sanghvi and Jeetendra Jain, who are in the media, entertainment and real estate business, have committed to invest Rs. 200 crore over the next five years.
The clubs will be driven by music, gourmet food and beverages, global disc jockeys, celebrity chefs and special events. They will be open to all but special services including cigar rooms and liquor lockers for members only.
"While we will not try to disconnect from the core essence of the brand, it's not going to be about nudity that the Playboy magazine has been traditionally known for. It's going to be more about lifestyle, exclusivity," said Sanjay Gupta, CEO of PB Lifestyle.
PB Lifestyle has an exclusive 30-year licensing agreement with Playboy Enterprises. The other business, publication and television with adult content, is not part of the agreement in any way.