Managing Director, Vicunha Textil for Europe & Asia Vicunha Textil
Vicunha opened a showroom in Amsterdam last November. Do you plan to expand to new regions?
We expect Amsterdam to become the commercial hub of our European activities over the next few years. We can always consider being present in other important capitals, but for the time being we are building up Amsterdam.
Where do you draw inspiration from to develop new denim fabrics? What are the three major influencers?
Inspiration comes from many places, but there is always coexistence of references from a previous era reinvented and reinterpreted in combination with the new. We are always looking back whilst looking forward. Technological advances play a large role in what we achieve. We have come a long way from the shrink to fit days of sitting in a bath of water in a pair of new jeans.
Fabric always needs to relate to shape and style trends. It is the super skinny that has led to the success of hi-stretch fabrics and dual core spinning technologies have given us the best performance in this category. Lifestyle changes also play a part. New categories have been invented, like work clothes that also become play clothes and casuals that become active sportswear. The lines are blurring.
Please share details of the last two fiscal years and your expectations from the next two.
In spite of the slowdown in Brazil, we have done well these past two years. Our turnover is around US$ 600 million and the net profit in the region of 10-12 per cent.
Any plans to step into the Asian/ Southeast Asian market?
Yes, indeed! We have a big new idea which will be announced shortly. But it is too early to speak about it now.
Which are the three main sustainable policies followed at your units?
We excel at waste reduction, our 3R system of reduce - reuse - recycle runs through the entire manufacturing process. We recover heat, water and chemicals for re-use. We recycle our own cotton in- house using every ounce and therefore creating zero waste. We use locally available cashew and coconut shells to fuel our boilers, which would otherwise go to waste, and harvest the CO2 emissions from the boilers to use in our water cleaning plant which in turn makes us carbon neutral.
What budget have you allocated towards R&D?
Our average R&D expenditure is about three to four per cent of turnover.
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