Tirupur’s Knit Fair not ‘knitted’ properly
Witnessing the worst decline in last three decades, Tirupur’s apparel export industry recorded business of Rs. 23,000 crore during the last financial year, significantly less when compared to Rs. 26,000 crore the previous year. This negative trend was also reflected during the recent 45th India International Knit Fair (IIKF) conducted from May 16-18 at Tirupur as it was a comparatively dull show this time. Organised by AEPC, IKFA and TEA, the IIKF fair witnessed only 30 companies displaying their latest offerings, contrary to the organisers’ claim of 50+ overseas buyers and 100-odd Indian buying houses/ buying agents expected to visit; the event also witnessed a very low footfall of buying community. Though few participants were satisfied with the buyers’ visitation, most of them were disappointed. Similarly, the overseas and Indian buying representatives who visited the show were unhappy with the decreasing number of participants. The Apparel Online team was present at the fair for all three days and interacted with most of the exhibitors and visitors.
In spite of perfect venue, participation of some top exporters in the fair, displaying diverse products’ range, tickets and the stay (hospitality) support given to the visiting buyers – the visitation on all three days, be it from overseas buyers or Indian buying houses
– was very limited. Some of the buyers, who were visiting the event for the first time, rescheduled their tickets/programmes looking at the size of the fair. The event usually has 40 to 50 exhibitors participating. Though the fair was dedicated to knitted garments, some exporters like United Impex, Mumbai and Amaravathi Garments manufacturing Co., Chennai were displaying woven garments also.
This proved as an advantage for such exhibitors as well as for buyers, as it served each other’s purpose. As far as products on display were concerned, a wide range of variety in men’s, women and kidswear could
“We had about 30+ buyers at the fair which is a good number. Nowadays overseas buyers don’t come here because everybody is working through a buying office or agent. About 100-odd buying agents also visited the event; it is a good footfall. As far as limited number of participation is concerned, many exporters are not looking for new buyers as they are happy with the existing ones. But companies that want to expand, always participate in this event.
This fair is organised with the vision of establishing long-term relationship and in every edition of this event, the exhibitor gets one or two buyers, which is sufficient for them. The fair is really positive in this way.” – A. Sakthivel, Chairman, IKFA
Sharing exporters’ issues and perspective solutions – (L-R) T.R. Vijaya Kumar, General Secretary, Tirupur Exporters’ Association; Rakesh Vaid, Sr. Vice-Chairman, ATDC; A. Sakthivel, Chairman, India Knit Fair Association (IKFA); V. Sathyabama, MP,...