Looking into the Future
A comprehensive report of The Annual Conference on 'Indian Textiles - The Way Forward'
It was a conference that was eagerly awaited by the textile industry. The Conference began with Chief Guest, Mr Sunil Porwal, Addl. Chief Secretary (Textiles), Govt. of Maharashtra, lighting the traditional lamp. At the start of the Conference, Dr P Nayak, Secretary, Textiles Committee, Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India, and Mr Sunil Porwal, IAS, Addl. Chief Secretary (Textiles), Govt. of Maharashtra, were welcomed with bouquets and Mr V C Gupte, Convener and Chairman, The Textile Association (India), Mumbai Unit, gave an overview on the subjects the Conference would cover. He also spoke about a very relevant but uncommon topic which would be covered in the course of the Conference. He was hopeful of the Indian Government’s ‘Make in India’ mantra, that helped the apparel industry and gave a special thrust to Banarasi saris and khadi which was evident from the PM’s speech recently. He also elaborated on increasing the apparel industry’s potential to contribute to nation building, employment generation and revenue building. The domestic demand for branded garments is getting buoyant, not only in metros, but also in tier two and three towns. The need of the hour is for local brands to align themselves with international brands.
Dr P Nayak, Secretary, Textiles Committee, Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India, was the Guest of Honour for the event. He spoke about the need to monitor each of the processes in textile and apparel production, right from start to finish. The Prime Minister has given a call that there should be a ‘zero defect’ approach to garment manufacturing. Quality is very important and the Integrated Skill Development Scheme is going to be given due priority. In the last budget, there was focus on looms and manufacturing of fabrics. Dr Nayak also spoke about the Global Textile Conference to be held in Bangkok from February 13-15, 2015, and invited all to attend. He emphasised that unless levels of defects in manufacturing are reduced and prices are made competitive, there is clear and present danger that Bangladesh, Turkey and the Southeast nations may takeover. India is expensive as compared to
Bangladesh, China and Pakistan and prices need to be reduced. He also spoke of increasing growth rate and the strong demand in the domestic market.
Mr Anuj Bhagwati, MD, A. T. E. Enterprises Pvt. Ltd., Ms Dipali Goenka, MD, Welspun Global Brands Ltd. and Mr N A Acharya, Chariman, Associated Chemicals, were presented with the Industrial Excellence Awards for their outstanding contributions to the textile world. Mr Vidyut Acharya collected the award on behalf of his father.
Mr Sunil Porwal, IAS, Addl. Chief Secretary (Textiles), Govt. of Maharashtra, spoke about how India will be number one in cotton production, but also cautioned regarding the surplus in cotton bales and the arrangements that will have to be made for their storage. He spoke on logistical issues such as how production centres and consumption centres are at different locations and how fifty per cent of clothing made in Maharashtra goes elsewhere for processing and garmenting. He also elaborated on how to improve processing (water issues) and skill development. Mr G D Devla gave a presentation and Mr A V Mantri, Hon. Secretary, The Textile Association (India), Mumbai Unit, proposed a Vote of Thanks after which Mr C Bose, President of The Textile Association (India), Mumbai Unit, offered a momento to Mr Porwal and the first session commenced.
The first session of the Conference covered various topics under the broad umbrella of ‘Finance and Allied Issues.’ Ms Priya Kini, Sr. Director, HSBC Bank, gave a very informative presentation on the ‘Impact of foreign exchange fluctuations on the textile industry and the challenges it poses and Foreign Exchange Risk Management.’ She spoke about the relative stability of the rupee since the past few months and gave a clear idea of the rules and regulations. Next to speak was Adv. Sanjay Kher, Clover Consulting Pvt. Ltd., who covered the very interesting and uncommon topic of ‘Intellectual Property Rights: Ethical business practices.’ He peppered his presentation with interesting anecdotes and personal experiences. He also spoke on how India has had to harmonise patent law and spoke about GI- a subset of trademark law. Intellectual Property is usually intangible and there is a territorial aspect involved, and how it can be protected. He made it easy for the audience to understand this complicated topic by being very direct in his approach.
Ms Renuka Ramnath, Founder, MD & CEO, Multiples Alternate Asset Management Pvt. Ltd., covered the topic of ‘Credit Access to Textile and Clothing sector,’ she elaborated on the credit access to the clothing and textile sector and gave a very informative speech regarding the same. Mr Kapil Gupta, VP, Strategic Services, Realization Technologies India P. Ltd. was the last speaker in this session. His topic was ‘Execution & Economics of Textile Projects… (20 per cent to 50 per cent faster).’ He spoke with a lot of clarity and conviction on the subject.
Post lunch, the second session commenced and the main topic of this session was ‘Connecting with the Consumer.’ This was perhaps the most awaited session by the audience. The first speaker was Mr S Krishnamoorthy, CEO, Domestic Textiles Business, Jaya Shree Textiles (Linen Club). His topic was ‘Garment Business and Supply Chain Management.’ He said that the main focus should be on cash and the bottom-line. He spoke at great length about the Zara model where the inventory is lowest at six days and they have 11,000 designs and take four to five weeks for a new product to hit the shelves. Lower quantities create a sense of shortage and affordable fashion is always welcome. More styles and more choices is the mantra for Zara and they have factories around Spain and Portugal. The Zara model is indeed the most interesting and profitable model and has achieved tremendous success. He spoke about the supply chain in India and listed factors such as more mega cities, proliferation of segments, improved infrastructure, better regulatory climate, a strong global connect and increasing penetration of technology leading to an improved supply chain. He said that basically there are three supply chain models; namely, push supply chain, pull supply chain and push and pull supply chain. Ideally, the push (30 per cent) and pull (70 per cent) supply chain model is the most suitable. Mr Govind Shrikhande, Customer Care Associate & MD, Shoppers Stop Ltd., was the next to speak on ‘Challenges in meeting Consumer Demands.’ He gave a presentation titled ‘Indian Retail: Picture abhi baaki hai…’, an extremely interesting presentation on the changing dynamics of Indian society and markets, and highlighted the continuous journey of transformation India has undertaken since partition. His presentation covered the changes and evolution in every walk of life and he spoke about how rising consumer incomes, women entering the workforce and increasing mall space were some of the factors leading to the evolution of Indian retail markets. He spoke about strategies adopted by Shoppers Stop, such as the ‘gift scheme’, and increased online presence to attract consumers. Mr Manohar Samuel, President (Marketing & Business Development), Birla Cellulose, Grasim Industries Ltd., was the next to speak. His topic was ‘Value Chain Collaboration with End Consumer - A Must,’ he gave an overview of the supply side and the consumer side. He spoke of the blurring of lines between B2B and B2C and gave valuable insights into various transformations within the industry which have impacted the end consumer such as going western but with Indian sensibilities, how fusion is the new in thing, endorsing a tribal view, being publicity hungry, woman power (more assertive and liberated), how consumers are spoilt for choice, no cash needed immediately (credit cards) and segmentation within the value chain (Ramraj Dhotis). He also spoke about apparel being the fastest growing category in e-commerce and various other market research findings.
THE ZARA MODEL IS INDEED THE MOST INTERESTING AND PROFITABLE MODEL AND HAS ACHIEVED TREMENDOUS SUCCESS.
Mr Mauro Fassi, Sales Manager, Loris Bellini, S.r.l., Italy, spoke on ‘Innovation in Yarn Dyeing (Power Savings upto 70%).’ The challenge, according to him, is to improve the dyed yarns quality further (zero harness, easy, total and consistent and evenness), generate sustainable profitability by cutting down on electric consumption and keep the current dyehouse consolidated habits. He spoke about the benefits of the Pulsar machines which are coming to India in Dec/Jan in the coming year.
SESSION – III
Post tea, the third and final session commenced. Dr Pankaj Desai, Head, Research and Development, Colourtex Industries Pvt. Ltd., spoke on ‘Dyeing of Polyester fabrics using Super Critical Fluid (Carbon Dioxide) – Waterless Dyeing.’ He spoke of Colourtex machines being introduced in India in 2016-2017. The textile industry needs to develop more sustainable production concepts. In future, there will be a demand for novel colouration technologies, waterless dyeing and recycling dyeing methods. In particular, waterless dyeing concepts such as dyeing of polyester fibres from supercritical carbon dioxide (SCF) are of major interest. Mr Bertram Seuthe, Marketing Coloration, Global Business Development Continuous, DyStar Colours Distribution GmbH, spoke on ‘Innovative Solutions for Sustainable textile production.’ The production of sustainable textiles is the responsibility of all stakeholders in the supply chain. DyStar, as the leading provider of textile services and innovative solutions, is addressing these environmental challenges. Under DyStar’s econfidence commitment, the Dianix Green Range meets customers’ needs and expectations regarding ecological, technical and economic aspects. Mr Adam Jozwik, Area Sales Director, Fong’s Europe GmbH and Mr Peter Tolkssdorf, Head of Product Management for Dyeing and Application, A. Monforts Textilmaschinen, spoke on ‘Continuous Dyeing,’ Mr Adam Jozwik spoke about Goller Brand and the Goller’s competence in continuous dyeing and Goller Pad Stream Dyeing Range. Mr Peter Tolksdorf spoke about Monforts Advanced Technology Centre and Monforts dyeing and finishing machines. Mr Raj Varghese, General Manager, Archroma India Pvt. Ltd., spoke about Speciality Functional Finishing and that Archroma has introduced a number of innovative solutions that can easily be adopted by textile mills and manufacturers willing to answer the growing ecological demands for reduced resource consumption by consumers, brands and retailers. The Conference ended with a Vote of Thanks by Mr A V Mantri. It was indeed a very informative event and gave new and valuable insights into all the areas of the textile industry.
THE TEXTILE INDUSTRY NEEDS TO DEVELOP MORE SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTION CONCEPTS.