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Con­ver­gence of mar­kets blurs the gap be­tween global and do­mes­tic busi­ness The last is­sue of 2018 is ready… and it means a whole year gone-by dis­cussing, de­bat­ing and re­port­ing news and views from the in­dus­try. The most sig­nif­i­cant change that Ap­parel On­line has seen this year, is the in­creased fo­cus on the In­dian re­tail mar­ket.

I am sure my sharp read­ers must have noted this shift…

No, I would rather like to call it an ad­di­tion, not a shift be­cause we will con­tinue as be­fore to be the ‘eyes and ears’ of the gar­ment ex­port in­dus­try.

The fo­cused at­ten­tion that we have given for two decades on the ex­port mar­ket will not be di­luted, but added op­por­tu­ni­ties in In­dian re­tail will give ex­porters/man­u­fac­tur­ers new op­tions to grow busi­ness in a dif­fi­cult global en­vi­ron­ment. Af­ter all, mar­kets are con­verg­ing, so why not man­u­fac­tur­ing!

What we have added to the pages of Ap­parel On­line, is an ac­knowl­edge­ment of the grow­ing stature of In­dian re­tail in the tex­tile value chain. How can we ig­nore the buzz around In­dian re­tail and its grow­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing needs?

In fact, the ex­cite­ment sur­round­ing the grow­ing fash­ion re­tail in In­dia has cre­ated rip­ples not only within the coun­try but also on a global plat­form. Global names like Zara, H&M, Mango, Guess, United Col­ors of Benet­ton, GAP, for­ever21, Levi’s, adi­das, Nike, to name a few, have al­ready made their pres­ence felt and at least 100 more brands/re­tail­ers are set to make their foray into this mar­ket in the next cou­ple of years to cash in on the big op­por­tu­nity.

Not to for­get the In­dian re­tail­ers and brands like Arvind Lifestyle Brands, Fu­ture Group, Re­liance Re­tail, Shop­pers Stop Ltd., V-Mart, V2 Re­tail, AND, Allen Solly, Van Heusen, Be­ing Hu­man, etc., that are also emerg­ing strongly in the do­mes­tic mar­ket.

As a knowl­edge plat­form that has al­ways strived to keep pace with the evolv­ing dy­nam­ics of the busi­ness, Ap­parel Re­sources (pub­lisher of Ap­parel On­line) has ini­ti­ated a sourc­ing event – Ap­parel Sourc­ing Week that will bring to In­dia the man­u­fac­tur­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties of the Asia-Pa­cific re­gion for the prod­uct needs of the grow­ing re­tail mar­ket in the coun­try. The two-day event, to be held in March 2019, is be­ing hosted by the ‘re­tail cap­i­tal’ of In­dia, Ben­galuru.

Given the size and di­ver­sity of the In­dian fash­ion re­tail mar­ket, there’s no bet­ter op­tion than forg­ing new tie-ups with sup­pli­ers from the es­tab­lished man­u­fac­tur­ing des­ti­na­tions of Bangladesh, Viet­nam and China, be­sides In­dia. Flex­i­ble, price-com­pet­i­tive and com­mit­ted as they are, man­u­fac­tur­ers from these Asian man­u­fac­tur­ing strongholds are the best bet to meet the de­mands of the rapidly grow­ing fash­ion re­tail, which is set to touch a whop­ping US $ 115 bil­lion by 2025.

The re­tail­ers have re­sponded very pos­i­tively to the event and to make it more worth­while, a se­ries of six sem­i­nars on the most con­cur­rent top­ics of the in­dus­try have also been added to its kitty. So, the Ap­parel Sourc­ing Week 2019, be­sides bring­ing to­gether the key man­u­fac­tur­ers from the re­gion closer to the In­dian re­tail mar­ket, will also have in­dus­try-ori­ented dis­cus­sions by cu­rated panel of in­dus­try ex­perts. The dis­cus­sions will en­sue on top­ics which have wide rang­ing, far reach­ing im­pli­ca­tions on ease of buy­ing and sourc­ing and will ex­cite every stake­holder.

As we move into 2019, the team at Ap­parel Re­sources is very up­beat and ex­cited to be putting up such a great show to­gether, which will in the com­ing years, be­come a stand-out plat­form for sourc­ing in Asia for Asia!

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