The Indian textile industry, the second largest in the world after China, is eyeing textile and clothing production worth $85 billion and exports worth $50 billion in FY10. A large number of companies active in this sector include SMEs, MSMEs and industrial giants who supply their products across the globe.
The industry is so vast that to stay abreast of the latest trends and to make detailed information available about it one cannot find a single medium at present that covers the industry extensively. For this, the industry players have to mostly depend on print publications, web portals and industry events.
The print publications
In the print segment, there are few prominent players that are active in this sector. ‘The Indian Textile Journal’ is a 119-year old monthly magazine that covers the entire gamut of the textile world from fibres to garments. ‘The Textile Magazine’ is another old publication that was established in the year 1959. ‘Textile India Progress’, ‘Textile Times’ and ‘Textile Review’ are some of the other dominant players in the business. In this segment, the fastest growing magazine is considered to be the ‘Stitch Times’, which also focuses on the home textile section. The other players include ‘Textile Trends’, ‘Texicon India’, ‘Colour Age Publication’, and ‘Textile Machinery’.
Most of the print players also have their websites. Textile web portals are considered to be a marketplace providing a common meeting point to buyers and suppliers of textile products and services.
Besides the print players, there are a few other online players such as ‘Fibre2fashion.com’, considered to be India’s as well as the world’s largest web portal. This portal provides news, interviews, articles, business opportunities, buying/ selling, business leads and company branding service. Another online player is ‘Bharattextiles.com’, which also provides regular ticker update on the yarn market.
Business coordination House’s, bch.in claims to service the technical textile industry by providing links to various companies, entrepreneurs, students, academicians and other stakeholders of the industry from all across the globe. Other web players include ‘Indiamart.com’, ‘indiaforum.com’ that provide information on textile business.
The industry has several events, conferences and summits dotting the entire year that prove to be a great platform for business expansion and meeting new clients.
A quick look at some Events, Conferences & Seminars
Who are the advertisers?
By and large the industry has its own medium for publicizing, which is mostly done in-house and generates advertisements within the industry itself. Advertisers include large enterprises, machine manufacturers, logistic companies, companies looking for brand/product penetration in the value chain, fashion designers and software providers focusing on the textile and apparel segment. For example, ‘Textile Review’ has advertisers like Reliance Industries Ltd, Alok Industries Ltd, Colourtex Ltd, and many more, while ‘The Textile Magazine’ receives advertisements from players like Laxmi Machine Works Ltd (the world’s largest spinning machine manufacturer) and many machine manufactures across the globe. Also, ‘Textile Times’ gets its ad pie from the likes of Inside Fashion, Visaka Industries Ltd, ECGC, TT Undergarments, and RIETER, among many others.
The advertisers know that they have a completely different segment of target audience, who can be reached only through industry specific publications and so they advertise mostly in the medium specifically meant for their industry. Gopinath, Senior Engineer (Sales), Laxmi Machine Works Ltd, said, “We have to target major textile retailers, and so for us it is needless to advertise in a general public interest medium. According to our advertisement plan and budget, we choose the best industry specific medium and close the deal with them thinking deeply on the aspects like the business generation, publicity and participation in events.”
Lack of publicising opportunities
Though the key textile players feel that the industry has sufficient opportunities that can fulfill their present advertising needs, each segment of this industry needs specific publications. It also depends on the nature of the product that it generates.
Samuel Joseph, Managing Editor, ‘The Indian Textile Journal’, pointed out, “In the textile industry, the look and feel in a real situation plays a very important role in ordering products. So, our advertisers who come to us select B2B publications related to their products only.”
“But the publications covering the specific markets across the globe are quite a few,” observed Venkat Subramanian, Director, fiber2fashion.com, adding, “The main challenge lies in creating a cross functional team, the flexible business model, long term investment strategy and bringing quality contents to retain visitors.”
The path ahead
Raju Chandran, Editor, ‘Textile India Progress’, said, “Excise duty is the main deterrent in the growth curve of the industry. It also puts a hurdle in the growth of the specific trade publication. If this duty is nullified or reduced, most of the industry players will not hesitate in coming to us for their advertising needs to see their business grow.”
“A few international publications like ‘International Textile Bulletin’ and some Chinese publishers wish to enter the Indian textile publication market,” he added.
S Raswant, Deputy Secretary, Confederation of Indian Textile Association, said, “The industry really needs new entrants in order to grow fast.”
R Natarajan, Managing Editor, ‘The Textile Magazine’, explained, “From the circulation point of view, the growth in the publication is immense. We don’t have any websites to promote the magazine as we are only focused in publishing of our magazine.”
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