Ti­tan Makes IIJS De­but

Vaideeswaran N., head of busi­ness de­vel­op­ment at Ti­tan Com­pany, one of the big­gest jew­ellery man­u­fac­tur­ers and re­tail­ers in In­dia, ex­plains to Soli­taire the com­pany’s move to en­ter the B2B space for sell­ing stan­dard­ised jew­ellery com­po­nents.

Solitaire - - CONTENTS -

This is Ti­tan’s first ap­pear­ance at IIJS. Tell us about the com­pany’s strat­egy.

IIJS is an awe­some ex­pe­ri­ence! This is our B2B ini­tia­tive’s third ex­hi­bi­tion in In­dia and first at IIJS. Ti­tan has been on the IIJS wait­ing list and we were lucky to get a booth this year. We re­ceived crowds of peo­ple sur­prised by our pres­ence at IIJS, so much so that on day one we went straight from break­fast to din­ner, skip­ping lunch in be­tween. Peo­ple im­me­di­ately as­so­ci­ate Ti­tan with qual­ity and con­sis­tency and be­lieve they can use this op­por­tu­nity for en­hanc­ing their pro­duc­tiv­ity. Jew­ellery man­u­fac­tur­ers that have been in this field for the past 15-20 years have told us that our qual­ity is su­pe­rior. That is a credit to us.

We are from the same fac­tory that pro­duces Tan­ishq, Mia and Zoya. We have a man­u­fac­tur­ing mother plant sit­u­ated in Ho­sur, Tamil Nadu, the sec­ond man­u­fac­tur­ing unit is in Pant­na­gar, Ut­tarak­hand, and the third is in Sikkim.

The pri­mary ob­jec­tive for our pres­ence at IIJS is that having ex­plored the do­mes­tic mar­ket for al­most two decades, with our ca­pa­bil­i­ties and ca­pac­i­ties to serve In­dian con­sumers through these branded ini­tia­tives, we thought why not try out in the B2B space. We aim to fur­ther build and en­hance our ca­pa­bil­i­ties, be more ag­ile and bring in in­ter­na­tional ex­po­sure to the com­pany so that we be­come more global at a later point – that’s our strat­egy. With this idea in mind, this new ini­tia­tive was born around seven months ago.

There are a lot of man­u­fac­tur­ing units in In­dia, and we know the coun­try is a hub of jew­ellery man­u­fac­tur­ing, es­pe­cially in the hand­made sec­tor. Peo­ple are having chal­lenges in terms of stan­dar­d­is­ing and having con­sis­tency in prod­uct qual­ity.

So we thought about let­ting the lo­cal man­u­fac­tur­ing fra­ter­nity

ben­e­fit from our niche stan­dard man­u­fac­tur­ing prac­tices that we have es­tab­lished over the years. The up­shot is: one, their qual­ity goes up; two, we bring in stan­dard­i­s­a­tion in the mar­ket­place; and third is a lev­elplay­ing field for peo­ple to build their own qual­ity lev­els.

The cus­tomer is al­ways very, very de­mand­ing, but the ques­tion is how to meet these de­mands. Based on that con­cept and strat­egy, we formed this B2B unit. Soon we will be com­ing with an iden­tity. So, if you want to buy jew­ellery, you are most wel­come to do so, but we will be mak­ing it in your name, like an OEM for white goods.

In the do­mes­tic mar­ket, we sell these com­po­nents made of find­ings and so on, but in the global mar­ket we are sell­ing fine jew­ellery in the name of Ti­tan Com­pany. That’s the whole idea be­hind this B2B ini­tia­tive from the com­pany. We will not sell fin­ished jew­ellery in In­dia, be­cause for that we have Tan­ishq, which is our mother brand, that’s our bread and but­ter for the en­tire Ti­tan Com­pany.

Do you feel you are com­pet­ing with your ven­dors at IIJS?

We may or may not. I was to­tally floored by the re­sponse we have got from many peo­ple who were sur­prised by our pres­ence. I think peo­ple now feel they have got a good chance to en­hance their qual­ity level, gain time, and re­duce their in­ven­tory lev­els be­cause some­thing is read­ily avail­able. Some in­tel­li­gent man­u­fac­tur­ers im­me­di­ately re­alised that.

Tell us about the com­po­nents you are sell­ing. Are any hand­made?

Al­most 95% of our goods are au­to­mated, and of the bal­ance some may be semi-au­to­mated, and 1-2% may be hand­made – but we’re mov­ing to­wards com­plete au­toma­tion soon. We have an in­ven­tory of 150 items such as ear posts, sol­ders, chains, stone col­lets, hooks, CNC ring bands, laser-cut ban­gles, Regi & Choka­pora balls, hol­low tubes, nose pins, etc.

We even of­fer stan­dard­ised waist belt strips, which typ­i­cally in­volve a lot of hand­made work. For ex­am­ple, to man­u­fac­ture a 200g waist belt, a jew­ellery man­u­fac­turer has to take 5-6 kg of gold, melt it, al­loy it, then draw it in the sheet form, then cut it and do the form­ing work by hand. By pur­chas­ing a semifin­ished waist belt from us, al­most 50-60% of this job is done by ma­chine; and the man­u­fac­turer is then free to do value ad­di­tion through em­bel­lish­ments such as stone set­ting, enam­elling, bead work and so on. There­fore, in a way, we are sav­ing his in­ven­tory car­ry­ing cost.

We can de­liver the in­ven­tory to the man­u­fac­turer’s doorstep within 24 to 72 hours through our ex­ten­sive lo­gis­tics net­work, which is one of our core strengths as we have nearly 300 re­tail out­lets.

The ma­chines that we use to man­u­fac­ture jew­ellery com­po­nents are cap­i­tal-in­ten­sive, with each cost­ing sev­eral crores of ru­pees. By mak­ing these prod­ucts avail­able to the lo­cal jew­ellery man­u­fac­tur­ing fra­ter­nity, we are adding value to their de­liv­ery and de­sign­ing process, en­hanc­ing their pro­duc­tiv­ity and up­grad­ing their qual­ity level. That’s the whole idea and strat­egy be­hind this B2B ini­tia­tive in the com­po­nent space.

Vaideeswaran N. (sec­ond from left) an­swer­ing vis­i­tor queries at the packed Ti­tan Co. booth at IIJS.

Choka­pora balls

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