Perfect Sourcing



This issue of Perfect Sourcing brings to you detailed information on the athleisure category of apparel, a product which has comfort, style, functionality and can be worn while at the gym or in office. The interesting aspect about the category is that internationally innovative ideas are being launched by mid to high-segment brands to make athleisure enter the most wearable category across the young, old and middle aged population. In India also, there is a growing trend for athleisure, as a result of which many cricketers like Virat Kohli, Bollywood actors like Hrithik Roshan, Shahid Kapoor, Jacqueline Fernandes and Milind Soman have launched their exclusive lines of athleisure. In fact, now textile companies like Monte Carlo, Sangam India and many export oriented units like Paragon Apparels have got into the category and are eyeing a bigger share with an exclusive yet affordable range.

Internationally, athleisure is already a matured segment and is seeing 15% growth YOY. These clothes also broke the norms of clothing-defined day and evening roles and added a new perspective to everyone’s life. For instance, Americans wanted to live comfortably from dawn to dusk, and they soon began to blur markers of class distinction. To delve deeper, we spoke to a lot of brands, manufacturers and companies who are making items for the segment and are coming up with products that are not only functional in nature but also have great quality and that extra nice look to attract everyone.

While on the one hand we are trying to explore some categories which can give a new ray of hope to otherwise slow business, on the other, Team Perfect Sourcing is also concerned about the current situation as the combination of GST and reduced rates of duty drawback rates are posing a major threat to the future of the apparel industry. We have been raising the issue from time to time in the magazine but so far there is no respite to exporters. Just to calm the situation down, the Government doubled the rates of incentives under the Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) for garments and made-ups exporters for a period of eight months. However, this is not going to change the situation in a big way. The drawback and Rebate on State Levies rates notified by the Centre are only interim relief as these benefits have not considered various embedded taxes and the inverted duty at the fabric stage. The industry is witnessing a shortfall of 2.7% in incentive when compared to the pre-GST era. The industry wants the Government to incorporate the embedded tax and announce the revised RoSL and duty drawback rates as these were desperately needed to bring back export growth and boost the confidence of garment exporters to take fresh orders and sustain themselves in global business.

We hope that the year 2018 comes with a fresh lease of life and new opportunities for the apparel industry.

Wishing all readers a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year.

Deepti Marwah