GEAR - In­ten­si­fies and Broad­ens Role in Im­prov­ing Ex­ports from Jaipur

Perfect Sourcing - - Cover Story -

Gar­ment Ex­porters As­so­ci­a­tion of Ra­jasthan (GEAR) was formed in 1978 with the help of fledg­ling Founder Mem­bers. The main aim was to pro­mote ex­port of Gar­ments from Ra­jasthan since no such apex or­gan­i­sa­tion ex­isted at that time. Now there are around 270 Mem­bers, out of which 60% are life mem­bers. The mem­bers are ex­port­ing Ready­made Gar­ment all over the world. Over the last 26 years, the As­so­ci­a­tion has been as­sid­u­ously pro­mot­ing ex­ports by or­gan­is­ing buy­ers-seller meets, trade ex­hi­bi­tions, Gar­ment Fairs, etc., in its cease­less en­deav­our to pro­mote and ex­pose In­dian Gar­ments to

In­ter­na­tional mar­kets for greater vis­i­bil­ity and choice of prod­ucts.

There has been a grad­ual but force­ful shift in con­cept and ide­ol­ogy over the past four decades. The cur­rent team headed by ravi pod­dar, MD Cheer Sa­gar, is more ag­gres­sive, dy­namic and proac­tive, im­bued with a com­mon ob­jec­tive of mak­ing Jaipur an ideal des­ti­na­tion for man­u­fac­tur­ing gar­ments. There is a lot of fo­cus on trans­parency among fel­low mem­bers on var­i­ous is­sues like how to in­crease ex­ports, tack­ling day to day prob­lems, sourc­ing raw ma­te­rial and ma­chines, adopt­ing new tech­nolo­gies, hold­ing reg­u­lar sem­i­nars and dis­cus­sion fo­rums to iden­tify and re­solve prob­lems, work­ing on new mar­kets, im­prov­ing prod­ucts and ef­fi­ciency and much more. The closely knit group has openly re­alised that rather than re­sort­ing to in­ternecine squab­bling and com­pet­ing with each other, it is far bet­ter to unite and fight for com­mon causes and long term growth.

Their web­site is al­ways up­dated, there are groups be­ing formed amongst the mem­bers to help each other in chal­leng­ing sit­u­a­tions while also iden­ti­fy­ing fairs and ex­hi­bi­tions that can give a boost to their busi­ness.

Speak­ing ex­clu­sively to PER­FECT SOURC­ING, ravi pod­dar, pres­i­dent, gear said, “To­day, the Jaipur mar­ket is not ex­port ori­ented per se, but serves as a ma­jor ap­parel man­u­fac­tur­ing hub to both the ex­port and do­mes­tic mar­ket. As an as­so­ci­a­tion, we have been work­ing on ar­eas that can ac­cel­er­ate growth and help us sail through the tough times be­ing faced by the in­dus­try post de­mon­eti­sa­tion and GST.” He con­firmed that Jaipur does busi­ness of ap­prox­i­mately Rs 5000 cr ev­ery year (both ex­ports and do­mes­tic) and most of the ex­porters are now into the do­mes­tic side of busi­ness also. “The in­dus­try has sur­vived the re­cent tough times by fall­ing back on the do­mes­tic mar­ket and now most com­pa­nies are

To­day Jaipur mar­ket is not ex­port ori­ented but it caters as a ma­jor ap­parel man­u­fac­tur­ing hub to both ex­ports and do­mes­tic mar­ket. As an as­so­ci­a­tion we have been work­ing on ar­eas that can ac­cel­er­ate growth and help us sail through the tough times be­ing faced by the in­dus­try post de­moni­ti­sa­tion and GST.

de­pen­dent on it with a share of 70: 30 in do­mes­tic ver­sus ex­port quan­tity,” shared Pod­dar. He also re­vealed that big chains like Re­liance Re­tail are al­ready sourc­ing a lot and plan to source al­most 1cr gar­ments from Jaipur ev­ery year.

He feels that Jaipur is no longer an out­dated hub be­cause it has some of the best fac­to­ries with good turnover, prod­uct mix and buy­ers pro­file. Com­pa­nies like H&M and Zara are also look­ing at Jaipur for sourc­ing and are do­ing sam­pling with many ex­porters. “We have the best of fac­to­ries. We will shortly have a new ap­parel park which will house all gar­ment units and is ex­pected to be op­er­a­tional by March 2018. Buy­ers from coun­tries like Brazil, Rus­sia, Ar­gentina and South Amer­ica have shown in­ter­est which will give a ma­jor push to Jaipur in the com­ing times,” he ar­tic­u­lated.

Pod­dar how­ever raised con­cern about in­creas­ing chal­lenges like GST, low duty draw­back rates and shift­ing of labour to other man­u­fac­tur­ing des­ti­na­tions as this would cause trou­ble for ex­ist­ing units in Jaipur. “I have writ­ten to our CM that we should also think of some in­cen­tives or schemes like Jhark­hand where the Govt is at­tract­ing in­vest­ments by giv­ing many ad­van­tages to its na­tives and peo­ple in­ter­ested in in­vest­ment,” said Pod­dar.

Pod­dar feels that as ex­porters, they have to now mar­ket them­selves in a more ag­gres­sive man­ner, travel a lot, meet buy­ers and un­der­stand them and their con­cerns and squeeze wher­ever they can so that prof­itabil­ity, which is be­ing af­fected, can be worked upon.

To of­fer more ben­e­fits to its mem­bers, GEAR has also tied up with Air In­dia wherein they have agreed that mem­bers of as­so­ci­a­tion will use Air In­dia’s ser­vice to travel. “We are now try­ing to work on dis­counted prices for air cargo from air­lines so that the in­dus­try gets some ben­e­fit,” said aseem Singla, from Gear who also runs ex­port house by the name Fash­ion Im­ages Over­seas. He also in­formed that as an as­so­ci­a­tion they are leav­ing no stone un­touched and right from col­lec­tive de­ci­sions re­gard­ing buy­ing of ma­chin­ery, pa­per work, GST, and shar­ing each other’s con­cern, the as­so­ci­a­tion is do­ing all. He shared, “Re­cently LOT was re­quired as a pa­per and no one had any in­for­ma­tion on the same. So we went to the Min­istry and ob­tained all re­quired in­for­ma­tion. Then, as a ser­vice, we of­fered all our mem­bers the in­for­ma­tion we had col­lected about LOT and all help in get­ting through the pa­per­work and for­mal­i­ties re­lated to it with­out ha­rass­ment or wastage of time. This ges­ture was highly ap­pre­ci­ated by other as­so­ci­a­tions as well.”

GEAR has been do­ing sev­eral sem­i­nars and dis­cus­sion fo­rums to ed­u­cate its mem­bers about var­i­ous top­ics of con­cern. “We aim at in­creas­ing trans­parency and co­op­er­a­tion,” added Pod­dar. The Gear team is now invit­ing young en­trepreneurs to join them and take the busi­ness to newer heights with their knowl­edge and in­no­va­tive ideas. The as­so­ci­a­tion re­cently had its An­nual Gen­eral Meet­ing, where they shared their con­cerns and fu­ture plans for the ben­e­fit of the in­dus­try at large.

To of­fer more ben­e­fits to its mem­bers, GEAR has also tied up with Air In­dia wherein they have agreed that mem­bers of as­so­ci­a­tion will use Air In­dia’s ser­vice to travel. “We are now try­ing to work on dis­counted prices for air cargo from air­lines so that the in­dus­try gets some ben­e­fit

Ravi pod­dar, pres­i­dent, GEAR

Aseem Singla, from GEAR

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