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Kitex's new infant brand Little Star to launch in US
Jun '16
In the face of an impressive year-on-year post tax profit of around 13.7 per cent and rising birth rate in the US, Kerala based leading infant wear exporter Kitex is all set to launch its own brand 'Little Star' in the US and Canada this autumn.

The company, which has emerged as a major supplier to several infant wear global brands such as Carters, Gerber, Mothercare, Jockey and Toys R Us, is in the process of launching its own infant wear brand 'Little Star' in US Market by October, 2016, said Sabu M Jacob, chairman and managing director in company's annual report released on Wednesday.

Kitex, which was founded in 1992, entered into a license agreement in September 2015 through KITEX USA LLC, with Lamaze International Inc, USA for manufacture and supply of Infant garments in US and Canada, Mr Jacob said projecting the target of achieving a Y-o-Y growth of 20 per cent in FY16-17 by expanding its customer base and increasing the business share with existing customers.

"The Company intends to drive the next level of organic growth by expanding markets and online and offline marketing channels assisted by capacity expansion and by enhancing people and technological capabilities," Jacob said adding that Kitex's key strategy is to continue leveraging on its leadership position in infant wear manufacturing as well as expand the market in US by forward integration.

Kitex makes garments for children in the age group 0-2 years and its main markets are US and Europe. Citing 2014 data, the annual report noted that birth rates in US have started to rise again. In 2014 the number of US births increased 1.4 per cent to 3.99 million from 3.93 million in 2013.

As a reflection of the renewed consumer sentiment in US, the specialty infant apparels segment has grown close to 8 per cent in 2015, said Jacob.

To achieve its targeted growth, the company plans to invest around Rs 10 crore during the current financial year to upgrade its manufacturing and information technology infrastructure.
At present, the company employs 4,119 people and has the capacity of producing 2.70 lakh garments and 50 tonnes of textiles daily at its 6 lakh sq ft sprawling complex situated in Kizakkambalam.

"We expect to maintain the same growth rate in FY18, FY19 and FY20… our aim is to become the number 1 infant apparel manufacturer in the world," said Jacob, whose Kitex is a 100 per cent exporter of cotton garments, mainly infant wear. (SH)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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