FROM THE PRESIDENT’S DESK
By the time you receive this Edition of Apparel, you would be in the midst of the Biggest Trade Show in Textiles in India. It gives me immense pride, pleasure, and a sense of satisfaction, to extend to all of you a warm welcome to the 67th National Garment Fair, being held in Mumbai from the 16th to the 19th July. Close to 1,100 Brands will display their Autumn/ Winter and Festive Collections to over 60,000 Retailers expected to attend Several innovations have been tried this time – making the Fair a 4 day event instead of the usual 3 days. This experiment has been brought about primarily from the feedback received from many of our visitors, who find it virtually impossible to cover all their suppliers and connect with new suppliers over a 3 day Fair. Of course, we have been gradually extending the Fair hours to nearly 11 hours – the Fair now closes as late as 9 PM, but even this does not seem to satisfy the needs of the buyers and the participants. And, hence, the experiment of having a 4 day Fair. As a special gesture, CMAI has not considered the increased cost of the 4th day whilst fixing the participation charges this time, but if the experiment is successful this may have to be factored in from the next Fair onwards. The other experiment is to have a ‘Non Decoration Fair’ - a Fair where all the stalls, irrespective of the size, will be based on pre-constructed stalls by CMAI. Many members have expressed their concern at the increasing cost of participation in the Fair. Whilst all appreciate the reasons for these increases, and indeed its inevitability, it certainly is a pinch for some. I believe that in the race to outdo the next door neighbour in making attractive stalls, members do end up spending at least 15% to 20% more on decorations. In a non-decorative Fair, all stalls are the same except in size. This not only saves cost for our participants, it also puts everyone on a more equal footing. But yes, this move will reduce the glamour portion of the Fair to some extent. This is why I call this an experiment. I am keenly awaiting the feedback, especially from the visiting Retailers, to this move. So once again, here is wishing all of you a great season ahead, and all the best for an extremely successful Fair.