Economic Times: December, 2016
Mumbai: Fabric and apparel major Raymond has partnered Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) to introduce a new line of clothing under the brand Khadi by Raymond, which will directly compete with Fabindia.
KVIC will certify Raymond to use Khadi mark to sell ready-made garments and fabric which will be available at KVIC and Raymond outlets across the country.
"Khadi is looking for an economic revolution and Raymond has technical expertise as well as significant global presence. This is a perfect match", said Sanjay Behl, CEO Raymond. "Our idea was really to own the complete value chain by getting directly into the source of Khadi in India and the most widest and proficient in Khadi is KVIC," he added.
The initiative is taken under the KVIC Act that permits it to promote the sale and marketing of Khadi or products of village industries or handicrafts and forge links with established marketing agencies.
As per the signed MOU, Raymond has agreed for a guaranteed initial procurement of a substantial amount of Khadi fabrics from the 2300 clusters under KVIC in the initial year.
Apart from retailing the brand, Raymond will provide technical and design expertise to Khadi manufacturing clusters for crafting readymade garments for its apparel brands.
"This is historic for us because a typical government organisation is joining hands with a private company like Raymond. Despite having the best products in the world, we could not take Khadi to the globe because of very limited resources. But this partnership will allow us to do that," said VK Saxena, KVIC chairman.
According to KVIC this joint venture is also a step towards making a radical shift in people's perception of Khadi from a fabric that stands for nationalism to a fabric that stands for fashion.
The association will add an incremental employment of 2.1 lakh man hours for spinners and weavers.
In the past, Raymond has had similar associations with the handloom sector which included hand-crafted khadi products as well but have never branded and marketed them on a scale this big.
Raymond has a near 60 percent market share in the Rs. 18,000-crore suitings segment.
Raymond plans to invest about Rs 500 crore to open 400-500 new stores across all its portfolios in the next 5 years. The company is also investing the same amount in setting up a new plant in Ethiopia to cater to its global markets like Europe and US.
The company, currently manufacture textiles from three manufacturing unit; Chhindwara in Central India, Vapi in Gujarat, near Mumbai and Jalgaon in Maharashtra is also ramping up its production capacity.
In Feb, this year Raymond invested Rs 450 crore in a new textile unit at Nandgaon Peth in Amravati district in Vidarbha which will have an annual capacity of 20 million metres of cotton fabric.