‘Sri Lanka is one of the most pre­ferred lo­ca­tions for top in­ter­na­tional brands.’

An ex­clu­sive in­ter­view with Asim Younoos, CEO, Avi­rate Fash­ions, Sri Lanka

Southasia - - Interview -

What com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tages does the Sri Lankan tex­tile in­dus­try of­fer?

The Sri Lankan tex­tile in­dus­try has many ad­van­tages to ben­e­fit from. Most prom­i­nent of th­ese are low prices, the ex­tra­or­di­nary qual­ity of the fi­nal prod­uct and Sri Lanka’s ex­cel­lent IT in­fra­struc­ture.

What is the sta­tus of the Sri Lankan tex­tile in­dus­try in South Asia?

Sri Lanka is one of the most pre­ferred lo­ca­tions for top in­ter­na­tional brands be­cause of the qual­ity and the ex­per­tise that the Sri Lankan gar­ment in­dus­try is able to pro­vide, as com­pared to other coun­tries within the re­gion. The in­fra­struc­ture of the fac­to­ries suc­cess­fully meets in­ter­na­tional stan­dards sup­ported by a great IT struc­ture within their or­ga­ni­za­tion.

What chal­lenges have you faced as a man­u­fac­turer?

As a man­u­fac­turer, the sourc­ing of the fab­ric can prove to be quite cum­ber­some and te­dious. To meet in­ter­na­tional stan­dards and up­hold the global rep­u­ta­tion of a brand like Avi­rate, it is es­sen­tial that we have the ab­so­lutely best qual­ity fab­ric. It is chal­leng­ing be­cause the lo­cal in­dus­try for fab­rics is be­low par and lim­ited

What key ge­o­graph­i­cal mar­kets does Avi­rate Fash­ion serve?

Cur­rently we are ca­ter­ing to Sri Lanka and In­dia. By mid-2013 we plan to en­ter Aus­tralia and by early 2014, we are hop­ing to en­ter the UAE mar­ket as well.

What point of dif­fer­en­ti­a­tion does Avi­rate Fash­ion en­joy over its com­peti­tors?

Avi­rate Fash­ions has es­tab­lished a very strong rep­u­ta­tion for it­self. Our in-house de­sign team is based in the

Where do you see the in­dus­try ten years down the road?

It is go­ing to be a tough road ahead with the cost of liv­ing in Sri Lanka in­creas­ing. The GSP isn’t avail­able and smaller firms will find it dif­fi­cult to sur­vive in the mar­ket. In ef­forts to meet com­pe­ti­tion, in­ter­na­tional brands are also try­ing to lo­cate their man­u­fac­tur­ing plants closer to the re­tail des­ti­na­tion, since lo­gis­tics have be­come costly. How­ever, the big­ger com­pa­nies that deal in high fash­ion gar­ments will be able to sur­vive and main­tain a place for them­selves.

What eco­nomic im­pact will the in­dus­try reap once the Port of Ham­ban­thota be­comes op­er­a­tional?

The Port of Ham­ban­thota will un­doubt­edly bring more in­vest­ment to­wards the south­ern area. As a re­sult, more fac­to­ries will be es­tab­lished thus cre­at­ing more job op­por­tu­ni­ties.

UK and we also have our own man­u­fac­tur­ing plants. In terms of de­sign and avail­abil­ity, a vast se­lec­tion of prints is used and avail­able in one sea­son and we keep our de­signs dy­namic, mak­ing sure to keep up with global trends and ex­pec­ta­tions. Our ex­pert staff, which have years of ex­pe­ri­ence deal­ing with some of the top in­ter­na­tional brands, also forms an in­te­gral and strong team be­hind the prod­uct.

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