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‘It is better to let the year pass by and not get into any kind of race’

Bobby Arora, Director, Status Quo

Bobby Arora Director Status Quo“Once the lockdown opens, people are more likely to rush to restaurants and other entertainment zones rather than stores for buying clothes. This may create a frustrating situation for brands and retailers and compel them to offer higher discounts than the routine trend. Regarding inventory management, we will have to be smart and carry forward some of the inventories to the next season. We will also have to liquidate maximum merchandise at better values to make some money.”

How do you see the present scenario in the garment industry?

At present, we are all at a standstill, as we really don’t know what is going to happen. We have never seen such a situation before. Until the lockdown is taken off and we see how the market moving, it is difficult to say anything. Currently, inventory levels at our factories and stores are at an all-time high as product movement has not yet started and almost 70 to 75 per cent summer merchandise is ready. Hence, even after the lockdown ends, we don’t see immediate movements of things at least for the garment industry as people will not rush into stores to buy clothes.

How do you intend to do away with unsold stocks? What will be consumer reaction post loc down?

Once the lockdown opens, people are more likely to rush to restaurants and other entertainment zones rather than stores for buying clothes. This may create a frustrating situation for brands and retailers and compel them to offer higher discounts than the routine trend. Regarding inventory management, we will have to be smart and carry forward some of the inventories to the next season. We will also have to liquidate maximum merchandise at better values to make some money.

How will the year be in terms of business?

Year 2020 will be a no business no profit one for every businessman as they will focus on recovering losses by selling their garments at as much value as they can. They will have to ensure cash flow continues as only this will keep the industry going. One bad year is not a problem but the money should keep rolling and the chain should not be affected. In crisis like this, all brands should stand hand in hand to keep the industry moving.

Elaborate on the government’s initiatives to support the industry.

The textile and garment industry expects a huge support from the government. Most brands have certain fixed costs. Until and unless they don’t get relief from such costs, their business is likely to be impacted severely as they will not be able to pay wages and salaries to their workers.

What about your Autumn/Winter collection?

Though we have already received bookings for our Autumn/Winter collection, it seems baseless as there is no movement at retailers end. Hence, we cannot over produce for winter or even on the same level. Vendors are also not confident about producing the required amount of garments.

How do you foresee the coming year for the garment industry?

As business is not expected to normalize even in the next year, every brand should sensibly consolidate and reduce unwanted costs. They should also reduce targets and work more smartly. It is better to let the year pass by and not get into any kind of a race.

“Once the lockdown opens, people are more likely to rush to restaurants and other entertainment zones rather than stores for buying clothes. This may create a frustrating situation for brands and retailers and compel them to offer higher discounts than the routine trend. Regarding inventory management, we will have to be smart and carry forward some of the inventories to the next season. We will also have to liquidate maximum merchandise at better values to make some money.”

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