Interview with Rajinder Gupta

Face2Face
Rajinder Gupta
Rajinder Gupta
Chairman
Trident Group
Trident Group

What are some of the innovations from Trident India?

Innovation and value addition are the two key success ingredients of Trident. One of the main innovations of Trident is air-rich yarn, blending cotton and PVA. The PVA dissolves in water leaving air pockets in the yarn which makes it lighter and softer, enriching the bathing experience. We have towels manufactured from a variety of fibres that have anti-bacterial properties and are soft and plush. Another innovative product has very high absorbency and at the same time it is light-weight, which is perfect for gym use. We have BP proof towels, where towels are coloured in special dyes that prevent discolouring from benzoyl peroxide. Health Pro towels are processed with anti-microbial surface treatment which prevents odour causing bacteria or microbes. Colour Pro towels are processed with superior dyes that ensure colour fastness and retain brightness of colours even after several washes. We also have fade-resistant towels and aroma towels. These innovations and value additions in the products have helped us earn customer loyalty, and to create a space for ourself in the stiff competition.

How would you explain the income and profitability in terms of exports?

Trident is an export oriented company, with export accounting for over 50 per cent of its total income during Financial Year 2015. Trident's export has been growing at a CAGR of approximately 38 per cent since inception. The company exports more than 90 per cent of its terry towels, followed by approximately 40 per cent yarn and approximately 10 per cent paper. The United States of America remained the top export destination for the company with its overall share in exports at around 45 per cent, followed by Europe.

What are your yarn production capacities in India?

We are one of the largest cotton yarn spinners in India. After the expansion, we shall reach 5.5 lakh spindles from the current 3.66 lakh spindles and 5,500 rotors. At present, we are capable of producing 8,400 mT per month of cotton and blended yarn. We are increasing our capacities in fine count compact yarn production for sheeting. We believe that there is always scope for improvement in everything. We are putting efforts and research in improving the quality of our yarn. We have witnessed great demand in quality-sensitive markets like Mauritius, Tokyo, Hong Kong. We have been able to get loyal customers from these markets as our yarn is up to their quality standards.

How is your textile business doing and which are your major products and markets?

The company operates in two major business segments: textiles and paper. In textiles, the main focus is on home textiles (made ups) like terry towel and bed linen. Trident's textile business is a major revenue-driving business, and contributes 80 per cent to the top line. To give you the global footprint of Trident, we have customers in over 100 countries and across six continents. The major markets in which the company operates are US, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The company exports to a mix of specialty home stores, departmental stores and mass merchandisers, with the stocks being available with top 10 retailers in the US, 6 leading retailers in Europe and UK and 5 out of 7 major retailers in Australia and New Zealand. The customers comprise of global retail brands like Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, JC Penney, IKEA, Target, Wal-Mart, Macy's, Kohl's, Sears, Sam's Club, Burlington, etc. In the domestic market, Trident caters to all segments including kids, infants and sports, and offers a variety of brands like Trident Classic, Trident His & Her, Trident Everyday, Trident Home Essentials, Trident Indulgence, Trident Organica, Trident Bath Buddy, Trident Curious Minds, Trident Cuddlies and Trident Play.

How do you make sure that environment sustainability is at the forefront?

At Trident Group, environment sustainability is never overlooked. We have a proper system in place in our production plants, which ensures that environment sustainability is not compromised at any point of production. For instance, our Budhni plant has set a fresh benchmark in sustainable manufacturing process. The highlight of the Budhni manufacturing plant is the Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) plant installed by Trident, which ensures that not a drop of waste water or effluent gets discharged in the open. Trident has invested in one of the most modern ETP and RO plants, which ensures that the waste water effluent from every process is treated and re-used in the manufacturing process. Another important highlight of the Budhni manufacturing complex will be the use of solar power. Trident is planning to install roof top solar panels in the new sheeting plant.

What are your latest developments in home textiles for the Indian market?

Gone are the days when home textiles used to be considered a mere utility, when bed and bath linen were brought just for functional roles. With rising incomes, evolving lifestyles and growing awareness, the category is being looked at with new interest. Towels, bath robes and bed sheets have become high involvement products that complement lifestyles and cater to different choices. Brands have been quick to cater to the changed mindset of consumers. Trident Group, one of the leading players in this category, has just introduced a new collection of bed and bath linen with contemporary designs, innovative constructions and luxurious fibres. We are focusing aggressively on branding strategy to percolate home textile products in the premium customer segment. A few such branding initiatives include signing actress Kriti Sanon as our brand ambassador and launching a multimedia campaign themed, The Affair to Remember. For the domestic market, we have also launched a new look and contemporary brand logo.
Published on: 12/10/2015

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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