We at Balujas have been fashioning footwear, for well over 90 years now, for the style- conscious people around the globe.
Balujas was established in the year 1919 by in the by lanes of Chandni Chowk by Sh. Jagan Nath Baluja who saw a dearth of quality footwear in the country.
Further to this Balujas expanded its footprint abroad with exports of footwear and other allied leather products in the 1970’s.
Helping us dress up the feet of the fashion-driven and quality-seeking customers in more than 25 countries, which includes major international fashion destinations like France, Italy and Germany, is our extensive worldwide distribution network of distributors, over 20 exclusive showrooms and an online store; our commitment to quality till date stands the testament of time.
Nothing happens unless we make it happen in the bazaar. This is what reflects from the success of Balujas, a renowned name in Indian footwear industry. Lala Amar Nath Baluja, who laid the foundation of Balujas in 1919, made his brand a household name. His firm determination, enthusiasm, innovativeness, quality-consciousness and whole-hearted support from his family, especially his brothers translated his endeavor into a great success. Today Balujas products are available at over 100 outlets all over India and is exported to other countries in a big way. This is the success story of Balujas as told by Mouj Prakash Baluja to Balbir Singh.
My great grandfather Ishwar Dass Baluja, a ‘Patwari’, was a native of Akalgarh (now in Pakistan). He had five sons – Jagan Nath Baluja (my grandfather), Amar Nath Baluja, Chunilal Baluja, Brijlal Baluja and Kundan Lal Baluja. My great grandfather was transferred to Delhi. His eldest son Lala Jagan Nath Baluja accompanied him to Delhi and set-up a ‘Chuna-bhatti’ at Chuna Mandi in Paharganj. After some time Lala Amar Nath Baluja, the second son of Lala Ishwar Dass Baluja, came to Delhi. The credit of Balujas entry into the footwear industry goes to Lala Amar Nath Baluja. One day he came to Chandni Chowk to buy a pair of shoes. But the shopkeeper told him that he could not afford to buy that quality footwear. Lala Amar Nath Baluja felt rebuked. He bought that pair of shoe and decided to open a shoe shop to show that a salesman not only could he buy that pair of shoes but we also could sell footwear in a better way and he made a determination to make quality footwear available to the masses at affordable prices. And true to his determination, Lala Amar Nath Baluja opened a footwear store outside Kucha Ghasiram in Chandni Chowk, Delhi on September 24, 1919 with the active support from his whole family and friends, especially Bhalla Shoe Company of Lahore.
Thus was laid the foundation stone of the great empire of Balujas. Three or four years later, that shop caught fire. The shop was renovated. In the meantime, a bigger shop was offered at Fatehpuri. As the business started growing, the other three brothers were also called from Akalgarh to Delhi. In this way the whole family helped in running the footwear business.
Now the Balujas started their expansion. In 1926, they opened another big store in Chandni Chowk opposite Town Hall under the mantle of Lala Jagan Nath Baluja. At that time it was very difficult to procure quality footwear. Keeping this in mind, Lala Chuni Lal Baluja was entrusted to take up manufacturing and procurement of quality shoes at Agra. Ours was the first North Indian Hindu family which dared to enter this business monopolized by the Muslims. The biggest problem Lala Chuni Lal Baluja had to face was the lack of standardization among the Karigars of Delhi and Agra. Slowly, the goods were standardized – sizes, colours, brands, heel heights – everything was standardized. The standardization that Balujas started in Delhi and Agra went a long way. That standardization was used not only by Balujas but also by other footwear manufacturers across the country. Lala Dina Nath Baluja, their cousin, was told to go to Kanpur to develop Chappals there. True to his caliber, he developed Kanpuri Chappals and Sandals which became a brand in their own right. These chappals were not only sold in Kanpur but also in Agra, Delhi, Sialkot, Karachi and other parts of India. His two sons settled in Lucknow and Kanpur where their shops are still running. On 31st March, 1931 our Connaught Place shop was opened in B-Block and its responsibility was given to Shri Kundan Lal Baluja, the youngest of the five brothers. He was the most educated in the family with great debonairish looks of the Baluja clan. After Connaught Place, Lala Amar Nath Baluja foresaw the potential of the new upcoming market in Karol Bagh and opened a retail outlet at Ajmal Khan Road in 1961. After making the Balujas a renowned brand, Lala Amar Nath Baluja left for his heavenly abode in 1963.
As the Government of India enacted the new laws of Patents & Trade Marks, the name ‘Balujas’ was officially recognized in 1944.
Until the late 60’s Balujas was the undisputed top brand in footwear in northern India. And it was the favourite of the top business and service families, bureaucrats and political brass starting from the first Prime Minister of India Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, first President of India Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Dr. Radha Krishnan, C. Raj Gopalachari, Mrs. Indira Gandhi to Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. The Modi family has a special liking for Balujas. The Baluja Peshawari Chappals, the New Cut, the Cross Sandal, the extra-ordinary Oxford were transported not only all over India but also several countries by enthusiastic loyal customers.
The next generation took over the business in the early 60’s with Gur Charan Baluja, Jag Mohan Baluja, Gur Mouj Saran Baluja, Jawahar Baluja, Raja Baluja, Man Mohan Baluja, Saran Baluja, G. P . Baluja and Ms. Sunita Baluja heading it.
The turbulent 70’s & 80’s brought in the “easy construction” processes in shoe making. The Specialist Master Karigar was replaced by a Process Supervisor. Shoe making became accessible to the non-specialized artisan also. Thereafter the monopoly of Balujas as the top quality brand in footwear was broken.
In 1977, Balujas entered the field of export of shoe uppers. The third generation saw Rohit Baluja take the product to West Germany, one of the bastions of quality the world over. In 1995 Balujas established their first top of the line full shoe plant with machines from Germany, U.K. and Italy. Footwear also retailed as ‘Spunters’ in India as well as in countries in Europe, Mid-East & Russia; this was done under the guardianship of Mr. Raman Baluja.
Surinder Baluja, Narinder Baluja, Mouj Baluja, Sunita (Baluja) Mehta ensured that the tradition of quality, standardization and customer satisfaction was upheld despite the onslaught of merchandized shoe brands in the retail front.
In 1978 I started producing leather garments for exports to Germany. And today leather garments are one of the biggest leather products exported after footwear from India. Today, Balujas products are available at over 100 outlets all over India. And its credit goes to the quality and customer satisfaction the Balujas brand guarantees to its customers.
To ensure that the method we use is the latest technology the world over. To follow the highest standards of honest workmanship in whatever we make.
To walk the extra mile to ensure customer satisfaction worldwide.
To remain a true cosmopolitan to the spirit. To remain a great corporation to associate with, to work for.
We are very conscious of the fact that fashion is a process of continuous evolution which through the passage of time finds expression in different thoughts and forms.
This makes it incumbent on our part to stay in touch with ground realities by keeping track of the changing aspirations and sensibilities of our customers.
Our DNA of innovation, technology and advancement enables us to stay abreast of all that’s new in the domain of fashion and quality while our deep-rooted value system guides us in maintaining the tradition of sound workmanship that’s basic to our ethos.