ThreadSol, a leading garment technology firm, headquartered in Singapore, organised the first edition of Apparel Tech-Up India in Tirupur, the knitwear capital of India, this month, in association with Mehala Machines.
Tirupur accounts for 90% of India’s cotton knitwear export and has driven the textiles industry in India for the past three decades, contributing a huge amount of foreign exchange to the country. Special Industrial Parks have been developed to support the industry, and Nethaji Apparel Park, Tirupur Export Knitwear Industrial Complex, SIDCO Industrial Estate and J.S.Apparel Park are a few that are operational. Nethaji Apparel Park has 53 companies manufacturing knitwear for exports.
Some of the world’s largest retailers including C&A, Nike, Walmart, Primark, adidas, Switcher, Polo Ralph Lauren, Diesel, Tommy Hilfiger, M&S, FILA, H&M, and Reebok import textiles and clothing from Tirupur.
The tenth edition of the Apparel Tech Up Series was to explore a range of pivotal subjects set to understand how technology can be an enabler for the Tirupur ready-made garment (RMG) industry to stay cost competitive, in particular, focusing on three fundamental elements: resource optimisation, lowered costs and improved outputs.
The event began with a keynote by T.R. Vijaya Kumar, Managing Director, CBC Group, and General Secretary, Tirupur Exporters Association. Kumar discussed the evolution of the Tirupur garment industry over the year and concluded: “With the rising competition in terms of cost and skill from countries like Bangladesh and Vietnam, it is imperative that Tirupur also adopt technology and automation to stay in the game.”
This was followed by a talk by Anuj George, Country Head – India, ThreadSol. He talked about the current sourcing trends in the apparel market, including fast fashion and ecommerce and consequently the result these trends have on garment manufacturers. He added: “Brands all over the world have two basic requirements from vendors – cost control and decision postponement. These are the attributes of the super vendors. Brands want good cheaper and faster.” The talk was followed by a quick presentation on ThreadSol solutions – intelloCut and intelloBuy by Nawaz Khan, Key Account Manager, ThreadSol.
The last speaker of the event was Sasi Kumar, from Mehala Machines. Mehala is a technology reseller with renowned presence in the Tirupur region. Kumar spoke about the different technology tools available in the market today for complete cutting room automation. The event was concluded with a panel discussion about the acceptance level of technology in Tirupur and the barriers that exist today.
Garment manufacturers formed the majority of the audience and included higher management from CBC, Cotton Blossom, Clifton Exports, Armstrong and Best Corporation to name a few. The introduction of such a platform of discussion was appreciated by all. “Apparel Tech-Up was a great way to network and understand the common problems all of us manufacturers face every day,” said Mr Murthy, from AKM India.
ThreadSol was established in 2012 and now has offices in Delhi, Bangalore, Jakarta, Colombo, Istanbul, Ho Chi Minh City and Dhaka. It serves more than 120 customers in 15 geographies. ThreadSol solutions are currently used by manufacturers in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Turkey, Philippines and China.