All posts by GD Jasuja

Time to shift into the reverse gear?

GDJASUJAIn good old days, Direct mail used to be a tool to generate sales, and now it’s moving customers from their desk top or mobile into stores. Stores remain a key part of the customer experience. Even now, consumers are more comfortable shopping clothes in stores and they can perhaps motivate Amazon to open up its own fashion apparel stores, featuring Amazon private labels. Or, Amazon might just buy an already existing chain of retail stores. The journey from Brick-and-mortar —-> Online —-> Online + brick-and-mortar….Amazon's Great Indian Sale 2018When asked “Is retail dead?” at the recent Custora Carma conference in New York, Carlos Alberini, Lucky Brand’s CEO replied “No. But I think what is dead is traditional retail…And those companies that continue to operate the way they did don’t have a chance. Putting the customer at the center is really the only way to win.”

CARMA is a forum for marketing leaders to share their strategies for navigating the complex new era of retail. CARMA’s message is “Go From Customer Data To Revenue, Faster.” Custora combines deep machine learning expertise or artificial intelligence with user-specific accessibility to provide customer analytics tools required by retail teams in this era of modern online world where practically every marketer has access to a flurry of disparate data sources, disconnected tools, empty buzzwords, and conflicting information. They face a very difficult challenge of leveraging customer data to grow their business. The ultimate goal is remove the “mass” from mass marketing with software tools that focus on customers as individuals with unique needs, likings, desires and resources.

World’s richest man Jeff Bezos’ Amazon is the king of online retail platforms catering to millions of small and big manufacturers, traders and agents. But Amazon is fast transforming itself from merely being a shopping platform to becoming the world’s biggest online retailer of self-owned brands. World’s second biggest technology company has been quietly gathering data on consumers’ buying pattern/behavior, what they are really buying, and possibly, the key data about the supply chain.

According to a recent LifeStyle Monitor’s news report-cum-survey Amazon surpassed Macy’s this year as the largest seller of clothing in the U.S. They did it by selling a lot of basics, like socks, underwear, and workwear. Amazon currently has 120 private label brands, 80 percent of which cover fashion or apparel. According to this report Gartner estimates Amazon apparel sales will reach $40 billion by the end of this year. The survey also reveals that consumers are still more comfortable shopping clothes in stores. Despite more and more consumers becoming digitally savvy, they still prefer to buy apparel in an actual store (72 percent). They also like to go in-store if they have any questions before purchasing clothes (66 percent), as well as to follow-up with post-purchase questions (55 percent). This has given rise to an speculation that big online retailers, specially Amazon, may be expected to open up their own brick and mortar apparel stores to exclusively promote Amazon private labels. It is also possible that for this, Amazon might just buy an already existing chain of apparel fashion stores very similar to their recent acquisition of Whole Foods chain of grocery stores.

The trends in the online business world seem to be moving in the reverse gear. There were times when ‘Direct Mail’ used to be a tool to generate sales at stores. Now marketers have to move customers from their desk top or mobile device into stores. This can be more convenient and comfortable for both buyers and sellers as they know precisely when and where to meet and for what. In future, it may become imperative for big successful online brands to compliment their efforts to win customer confidence and loyalty by having brick-and-mortar outlets at key locations to offer a fuller customer experience. In this respect, the Indian example which comes to my mind is that of lenskart.com, a successful online eyewear brand that has opened company managed retail outlets across India to have the necessary bonding with the customers, a must have prerequisite for this line of business.

So, its time to abandon traditional retail and shift into the reverse gear to say hello to the new online world of retail.

G.D. JASUJA
Managing Editor

Lenzing showcases TENCEL™ Intimate at Intimasia 2018

New TENCEL™ Intimate demonstrates the TENCEL™ brand essence of ‘feeling good with a natural touch’ at India’s largest lingerie and intimate wear trade show

March 19, 2018, Kochi India – The Lenzing Group (Lenzing) has introduced TENCEL™ Intimate to the India market at Intimasia 2018, the country’s largest fashion trade show dedicated to lingerie and intimate wear with the participation of over 70 local and international intimate apparel brands. Held at the Adlux International Convention and Exhibition Centre in Ernakulam, Kochi, Intimasia is committed to elevating the intimate wear business by promoting fashion, innovation and ideation. Bringing the intimate apparel industry together, the event aims to contemplate the way forward for the fastest growing sector of the textiles and apparel industry in India.

Continue reading Lenzing showcases TENCEL™ Intimate at Intimasia 2018

China’s Textile and Garment Exports Totaled US$ 24.01 Billion in December 2017

According to statistics of the General Administration of Customs, in December 2017, China’s textile and garment exports amounted to about US$ 24.01 billion, seeing year-on-year rises of 2.49% and a rise of 3.90% from the previous month. Thereunto, the exports of yarn, fabrics and related products totalled US$10.16 billion, with year-on-year growth of 10.98% and a growth of 1.72% from the previous month; the exports of garment and accessories was US$ 13.85 billion, down 2.96% year-on-year, seeing an increase of 5.55% from the previous month. In 2017, China’s textile and garment exports totalled US$ 266.95 billion, growing by 1.53% year-on-year. Thereunto, the fabrics exports was US$109.77 billion, up 4.5% year-on-year; and the garment exports was US$ 157.17 billion, declined by 0.4% year-on-year.

TEXPROCIL Chairman, TEXPROCIL Welcomes Union Budget 2018

The Union Finance Minister, Shri Arun Jaitley announced the Union Budget
for 2018-19 on February 1.

Welcoming the Budget, Shri Ujwal Lahoti, Chairman of The Cotton Textiles
Export Promotion Council (TEXPROCIL) said “, the Budget is pragmatics,
growth oriented and all inclusive”.

The Government had approved a comprehensive textile sector package of
Rs. 6000 crore in 2016 to boost the apparel and made-up segments The Budget
has provided an outlay of  Rs. 7148 crore for the textile sector in 2018-19. Shri
Lahoti expressed hope that the increased funds allocated for the textile sector
will cover fabrics also under the ROSL scheme.

The Budget has increased the financial outlay under the comprehensive
textile sector package for apparel and made ups from Rs. 6000 crore to
Rs.7148 crore. This will promote exports and production these two labour
intensive sectors, according to Shri Lahoti. Continue reading TEXPROCIL Chairman, TEXPROCIL Welcomes Union Budget 2018

Goods and Services Tax (GST) Vs. Bullet Train (Shinkansen)

GDJASUJAPost GST, one major announcement made by the government has been the launch of the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Bullet Train project. The GST and the Bullet Train both have generated immense public interest or public debate. This is so because of the many similarities they share especially in the complexity of their implementation. Both these ambitious projects require massive infrastructure, although of different kind. There is also a very huge amount of public money involved in both of these decisions.

Let’s assume the GST to be a Bullet Train. Then it is very clear that the government has already built this train and also built all the required tracks on which this train has to run. Infosys was awarded a Rs 1,380 crore contract to build GST Network (GSTN) system in Sept. 2015 that involved building and maintaining the technology network crucial for implementing the GST across the country for five years. By and large, the travel path of this train (i.e. starting point and the end point) has also been put in place. All the taxpayers, who qualify to be registered under the GST system, have to be the passengers of this bullet train. It is compulsory for them to catch this bullet train and travel the applicable distance without fail or face penal action for missing any ride. Continue reading Goods and Services Tax (GST) Vs. Bullet Train (Shinkansen)

“Industry 4.0” is the New Buzzword For Factories of the Future

Industry 4.0 includes cyber-physical systems, the Internet of things, cloud and cognitive computing. (Source: Wikipedia) Image Credit: Christoph Roser

“Industry 4.0” is the new buzzword becoming very fashionable, and hence, considerably over used. The credit for coining this iconic word goes to Siemens at the Hanover Messe in 2015. Industry 4.0 – also termed as the 4th generation of the industrial revolution – marks the beginning of a new era. It essentially represents the digital transformation of traditional industries like manufacturing to intelligent factories with the advancements in automation, advanced materials3D printingartificial intelligenceaugmented realitycobots (collaborative and robots). Adaptive and ergonomic production lines, intelligent robots and integrated energy systems – all parts of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) – are increasingly making it possible for companies, in practically every industrial and manufacturing sector, to digitize their operations. This digital transformation is enabling them to become 24×7 connected intelligent factories. The computerization of traditional industries, like manufacturing, i.e. their transition to intelligent factories, is going to be the key to their survival in a couple of years from now. Continue reading “Industry 4.0” is the New Buzzword For Factories of the Future

PM Narendra Modi inaugurates Textiles India 2017 Exhibition at Gandhinagar

Full text of PM Modi’s speech at the Textile India 2017 event is reproduced below:

PM Addressing the Inaugural Session of the Textile India 2017

Ladies and Gentlemen,

India is today described as a bright spot in the global economy. It has emerged as one of the most attractive global investment destinations. This has been made possible by a series of sustained policy initiatives.

More than seven thousand reforms have been implemented to improve the ease of doing business. Processes have been simplified and made transparent. Government has repealed over twelve hundred outdated laws. These are just a few examples. Continue reading PM Narendra Modi inaugurates Textiles India 2017 Exhibition at Gandhinagar