Indian apparel and accessories designers have made their mark on the fashion high streets of the world, turning in thousands of trendy designs in a season. Fazilite duo who hails from this cotton rich belt really brought laurels to the name of this small town by marking their presence on global map with their extraordinary efforts in World Garment Industry.
Veering to the left of the Hero Honda roundabout in Manesar, Gurgoan is a nondescript road. A 100 meters down this path stands a building, which symbolises the rising global acceptance of India's fashion design industry—the 3,50,000-square feet designing and manufacturing unit of Orient Craft, one of India's largest export houses. On the ground floor of this Rs 750-crore company, in a glass cabin overlooking the work stations of 100 associates, 42-year-old Anoop Thatai, Joint Managing Director & CEO of the company, is busy discussing the new spring collection for a US customer. Finally, after hours of discussions, a few cuts, silhouettes and fabrics are short-listed. Then the design team of around 100, along with a support staff of 700, begins work on rolling out the products. Says Anoop Thatai: "The team has to complete the project in the next 14 days. Then we begin work for a major European retail brand. I am running at full capacity.
For Orient Craft, it has been an eventful journey, for; just 10 years back it was manufacturing apparel for international clients with little value addition. But the company has climbed up the value chain. Says Sudhir Dhingra, Chairman and Managing Director, Orient Craft: "Out of the 65% women's wear produced by us, almost 40% have our own design input and we produce 2,000 design samples a day. This differentiates us from competition and certain clients get back to us for particular designs Anoop Thatai Joint MD & CEO, Orient Craft. "Besides manufacturing prototypes, we are developing our own design lines." Said Anoop
The design element in the apparels and accessories industry—apparel alone is a Rs 30,000-crore market—has risen by almost 80%. Graduating from assembly line operations for Western labels, Indian design firms are now creating their own lines based on strong in-house R&D capabilities. Says Devangshu Dutta, Chief Executive, Third Eyesight, a Delhi-based fashion consulting firm: "The days of cut, copy, paste are coming to an end as every exporter looks for a distinct image. This is possible only if you innovate in design."
While big export houses like Orient Craft are enhancing their businesses by emphasising on design, international firms are looking at India as an outsourcing hub.
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