A few months ago, I posted a story about India’s burgeoning gay tourism industry, which has grown rapidly since the nation’s high court decriminalized homosexuality last year. From nightclubs to publications, savvy entrepreneurs are taking advantage of this niche marketing opportunity in a big way.
Since July alone, over 15 bars in New Delhi have hosted gay events, up from a rate of just one event at one bar per week two years ago. India’s first gay-products store, Azaad Bazaar in Mumbai, has seen a year of growth, penetrating mainstream stores across the country with its merchandise. Queer-Ink.com, India’s first gay online bookshop, is exploring publishing titles in the next 6 to 8 months.
Even India’s out gay Prince Manvendra Signh Gohil, is getting in on the action by launching two new GLBT-oriented magazines. Fantasy, a publication targeted to lesbians, launched in July. Soon Fun, a magazine intended for gay men and straight women, will debut with a mix of “fashion, fitness, gizmos and relationships.”
There are no studies on the size of India’s gay economy, but the country’s GLBT market potential is evident, given that the nation is estimated to have a gay population of over 70 million.