Anita Dongre to focus on sustainability for growth

Anita Dongre has shared that she will focus on sustainability as she continues to grow her five fashion brands through embracing e-commerce and global retail.

House of Anita Dongre is a Rs 680 crore company as per the 2018 financial year - Anita Dongre- Facebook

“This year, we will just consolidate,” Dongre told ET Bureau. “Focus on community and sustainability… If we can fuse that with design thinking, then it’s a life well-lived.” Dongre has become known in the Indian fashion industry for her use of sustainable textiles which has become a greater part of the brand’s identity over the past few years.
 
Dongre is currently working with artisans in Rajasthan where Dongre spent much time as a child and from where she draws much of her design inspiration. Using handcraft techniques has the dual purpose of helping to keep these waning traditions alive and being more environmentally friendly than machine based methods.
 
Already a household name, Dongre is set apart from many of her peers by her “sustainability first” business plan. However, such a focus does not appear to be dampening the business’ growth: Anita Dongre reported a profit after tax for her five brands of Rs 20 crore ($3 million) for the 2017 financial year and now employs over 2,800 people.
 
One market that the brand is experiencing growth in is online. Dongre’s brother and House of Anita Dongre Managing Director, Mukesh Sawlani, said: “Ecommerce is a reality today. It has changed accessibility of fashion to zip codes that we would have never ever been able to reach… It’s 7% of our sales today and growing. But we will not be in the game of burning cash and discounting. That has destroyed so many brands. So even while spends on fashion and cosmetics are going to go up online, we have limited our supplies.”
 
House of Anita Dongre is a Rs 680 crore company as per the 2018 financial year numbers and the brand has five subsidiaries: Global Desi, AND, Grassroot, Pinkcity, and Jadau Jewellery. The business currently has 300 flagship stores in 76 cities and over 915 multi-brand outlets in 176 cities. Dongre has opened two flagship stores in New York, one for Grassroot and one for bridal wear.

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