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Hansiba to increase domestic & global reach
Apr '10
Despite the fact that global exports of handicrafts took a big hit in the last 16-18 months, following the global slowdown, Gujarat based Self Employed Women's Association (SEWA) has drawn expansion plans for its premium handicraft brand 'Hansiba', which it had launched last year, along with aiming for a sales growth of 40 percent year-on-year.

Actually, those dark days, was the period when SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre (STFC) started diversifying by spreading its wings in to new overseas neighbouring markets like Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. Alongside it will also strengthen its presence in India by opening eight more stores in India, to raise its store count to 11.

Also, in the pipeline is an exclusive line of fabrics and apparels; 'Sabaah', which will be exclusively retailed in the international markets. In a bid to reduce the impact of global slowdown, it will directly approach international retailers rather than through intermediates. In the previous fiscal, exports were down by 50 percent, which prompted STFC to take this decision. Fibre2Fashion spoke exclusively to Ms Reema Nanavaty, Director, Economic and Rural Development, SEWA, who spared her valuable time to speak to us and told about the future plans of Hansiba brand and the initiatives taken by SEWA.

We began this informative session by asking her to divulge the expansion plans of Hansiba, to which she said, “STFC has traversed a significant distance along the path of building a successful business organization model, a company owned by the women artisans themselves as a sustainable business enterprise. STFC is now clear on the future journey. It needs to communicate the USP of “Hand Embellishment” successfully through the brand 'Hansiba'.

“STFC has gained considerable experience in the retail market through both B2B and B2C businesses and feels that it is the right time to start focusing on marketing embellishments. STFC's marketing focus is now to communicate STFC products, more so as “Wearable Art”, rather than a garment. STFC's proposed strategy will focus on the ethnic / ethno modern women's apparels, home furnishings and gifts /accessories in the high end premium market, the mainstream fashion market and staple products market. STFC is entering into the high end premium market segment by co-branding with the labels and designers or design houses.

“The strategy is to market the embroideries and designs so as to ensure better remuneration to the artisan women. STFC plans to achieve 100% growth in business turnover in the next three years. In addition to this, there are initiatives like launching our crafts in neighboring countries like Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Bhutan under the brand-name of SABAH. (SABAH is a noun in Urdu language, whose dictionary meaning is early morning breeze, which also denotes freshness.)

We than asked her about the market segment targeted by 'Hansiba' to which she said, “We have three price segments; Premium collection, Special and Festive collection and a collection for Teenagers. In addition, we also have a collection of apparels, home furnishings, accessories, stationary & gift articles. The market segment targeted by Hansiba collection encompasses all the ranges; high-end premium market, the mainstream fashion market and the staple products market.”

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