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Interview with Saad Khaled Bari

Industry Speak
Saad Khaled Bari
Saad Khaled Bari
Director
Benetex Industries
Benetex Industries

Our future expansion will include 5 more 1 lakh sqft factories

Benetex Industries is a public ltd company established in year 1992 to serve as Bangladesh's premier manufacturer and exported of fashionwear, workwear, loungewear, sportswear, inner and outer wear for men, women and children. Fibre2Fashion speaks to Saad Khaled Bari, Director, Benetex Industries, about what makes Benetex a one stop shop for quality textile production and the major milestones achieved by it through the years.

What makes Benetex Industries a One stop Quality Apparel Solution Provider? What are your strengths as a company?

Benetex is a vertically integrated knit composite company which produces high quality, value added knit and woven Ready Made Garments (RMG). At our campus of 42 acres of land, just on the east of Dhaka and in an hour's time from the Dhaka International Airport, we have washing, embroidery, printing along with top quality fabric production facility (knitting- dyeing, fabric processing) - we have the capacity and capability to provide a full solution to our partners. Our infrastructure, location, experience, customer service, technical experience and value-added products are our strengths. We are specialised for work wear, innerwear, sportswear and jackets. Many factories can't provide the quality or price required by the buyer, that we can provide. We have the entire set of knitting machines (116 in total) and cover from 8" diameter and onwards to auto stripers and engineered stripers.

What are the major milestones achieved by the company through the years?

We were one of the first to get WRAP certification in the country. We have also been awarded as a top worker friendly factory. We have worked with top brands and have grown from 4-line factory to a 30- line woven, 40-line knit RMG and 30 ton/day fabric mill.

How many sewing, knitting, dyeing, etc units do you have as on date? Are you planning capacity expansion in future?

We have 40 lines for knit sewing and 29 lines for woven. Our installed capacity is for 80 lines knit. However, we are now focused more on value added RMG production and fabric production. 

Our future expansion will include 5 more 100,000 sqft factories. We are sitting on a large infrastructure which we are very keen on utilising. We have ETP, power, water. We are actively looking for partners so that together we can achieve!

Which garment segment contributes most to your sales and why?

Fabric production gives us steady income as volume of business out of Bangladesh has gone up but there is no new connection for gas/power lines. So having a strong fabric mill is our asset. However, our work wear business is good as there is less completion in this segment- as this is harder to do and not everybody's cup of tea with 110 machine per line kind of product. There are generally big losses before the business turns profitable, but fortunately, we know this product/business.

Has the increased purchasing power of the people of Bangladesh led to any significant effect on your price points?

Unfortunately, not at the same rate as that of inflation or people's purchasing power; we offer competitive prices as we believe in partnership and long-term business.

Where do you source your raw materials from?

It depends on the customer's requirements; I prefer US cotton as it is contamination free. For organic, I source from India. Woven fabric quality is good out of Bangladesh where it has better lead times. However, we source 70 per cent Chinese fabrics and accessories.

What is the monthly and annual production capacity of each of your products?

Our knit capacity is 1.25 million pieces, woven capacity is 600,000 units.

How agile is your supply chain? What steps do you take to ensure transparency at every stage?

We track and monitor our supply chain to ensure our customers' requirements are met and we have safe production. We only work with the top and reputed suppliers and do not make compromises when it comes to quality and safety. 

Which are the markets you cater to? What percentage of your revenue comes from exports?

We are a 100 per cent export-oriented company with US, EU, Australia, Japan and Korea being our main markets.

What kind of market study do you do to understand current trends and consumer tastes? How do you change your production and sales strategy depending on that?

We are actively following BGMEA and we keenly follow many garments related publications. We also have partners in HK, US, and our R&D gives us an understanding of where the market is moving, what are the trends etc and we are flexible to hit many different ranges of products.

What kind of innovations are you trying to bring into your garment business?

RMG is a traditional and somewhat conventional business. Although we are a 40-year old company, we have an agile and growth-related mindset. We follow lean system, 5S and Kaizen.

Consumers today are increasingly looking for sustainable garments. Do you think the trend is picking up in Bangladesh? As a company how are you achieving your sustainability goals?

Absolutely, Bangladesh has some of the best green projects in the world. Our own efforts in water usage reduction, to monitoring consumption of water, energy, looking for alternative and green energy sources are our steps to offset our rising energy costs and also to ensure a greener earth and greener production!

What global and local trends are impacting your business? Do you foresee a shift in the global sourcing market?

Being in the fashion business, change is a norm. Shifts in business are ongoing, but I see if the recession hits US, business out of Bangladesh will be important. Bangladesh happens to have a very good option for price sensitive sourcing.

What are the 3 key government policies that have helped units like yours achieve size and scale?

We had Incentives and LC facilities when there were neighbouring countries which did not have them. We are lucky to have identified garments as a good source of income earner which the government had the foresight of in the 80's and 90's. There was support from the top level of government in this matter as the country specialises in garments manufacturing. We can't make high-tech products, but we certainly know garments!

What was the turnover of your company in the last fiscal? What are the projections for the current fiscal?

We are looking at a growth of at least 6 per cent in the current fiscal compared to last fiscal. (PC)
Published on: 05/02/2020

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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