KOLKATA: From its origin in 1972-73 in Kolkata to an internationally-recognised brand controlling more than 15 per cent of the Rs 25,000-crore hosiery market in the country, Dollar Industries has come a long way. In an interaction with The Sunday Standard, Shashi Agarwal, senior vice-president, corporate strategy and investor relations, discussed how the Kolkata-based company is working on a strategy to acquire stakes in regional hosiery firms to achieve its bigger target of Rs 2,000 crore revenue by 2023.
From just being a men’s innerwear company, it has made a foray into women’s innerwear and outerwear, kids’ innerwear and other categories such as thermals. What’s your focus now?
In the men’s category, we are eyeing acquisition of unorganised players. But in the women’s category, we focus on the entire segment of innerwear.
If you look at numbers today, the market for men’s innerwear is around Rs 15,000 crore, but in the women’s segment, there are only a few names such as Loveable, Amante, Triumph, Valentine, Bodycare and Jockey. None except Jockey adds up to more than Rs 200 crore. Our focus is to get the right product rather than acquiring brands. In the women’s segment, we have panties, leggings, camisoles, but don’t have brassieres yet. We are looking at completing the product portfolio with brassieres and athleisure for women. The athleisure section will be launched in December this year.
How are the export markets doing? Is the rising dollar working to your advantage?
On exports, we are maintaining an eight per cent share. But rising dollars also makes it difficult for us at times since there are other factors too that need to be taken into consideration. For instance, when we were trying to explore the African countries, the devaluation of their currencies again creates a problem. So, we are working extensively towards growing in that area, while maintaining the market momentum.
How many manufacturing units do you have?
We have different models. We have a complete captive unit based out of Tirupur, where we have units right from spinning yarns out of cotton, to knitting, bleaching and dyeing units. There is an elastic unit, a cutting unit and a stitching unit and so on. Besides, we employ an outsourced captive model in Kolkata, where we buy yarn and send it across to the knitter, who turns it into fabric, which we send to bleaching and dyeing houses, where they turn it into a finished fabric according to our specifications. We also have units in Delhi where we manufacture socks and in Ludhiana we take care of thermals.
What’s your projection for this financial year?
We are targeting a 15 per cent CAGR growth for the next five years and by 2023, we plan to be a `2,000 crore company. The company’s products are available in all states across the country as well as markets in the UAE, Oman, Jordan, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Yemen, Iraq, Nepal, Bhutan, Nigeria, Ghana, Algeria, Kenya, Iran, Ukraine, Togo and Sudan.