The Karur-based AD Textile, a leading manufacturer and an exporter of handloom-based home textile products in South India with two decades of business operations, aims to offer free Handloom Skills and Entrepreneurship Development training for youth, women, and SMEs in handloom production.
In addition to offering training, the company will facilitate the entrepreneurs to avail subsidy-linked bank loans toward the procurement of handloom machines. The company can also supply raw materials, and buy back the finished products.
AD Textile has also launched its Saral brand of handloom-based clothing materials such as dhoties, kids wear, and silk gowns. The company is already manufacturing and exporting table linen, bed linen, kitchen linen, window treatments, and hand quilts mainly to North American and European countries. It has inhouse dyeing, stitching, quality control, checking and packaging units, and has expertise in international logistics.
Talking about the scheme, Mr Senthil, Managing Director, AD Textiles, said that the handloom sector is witnessing a renaissance as awareness about unique designs and finesse of the handloom textile products is on the rise among consumers across the world. The advantages of handloom are personalization and the cooling effect of the clothes, thanks to ‘marupini’ technique used by weavers.
Though the number of handlooms had drastically decreased in the past – from 5 lakh handlooms in 1950 to just about 2 lakh handlooms today in Tamil Nadu, with the advent of powerlooms, the market potential for handloom products has been steadily increasing. According to the Ministry of Textiles, the sector has the potential to scale up to a market size of about INR 4 lakh crores by 2024 from the estimated size of INR 1 lakh crores at present. With the intervention of new designs, and branding exercises, this 5,000 year-old sector, can also double its exports within the next four years – currently, this sector exports US$ 360 million worth of products.
Handloom is the second-largest employment provider for the rural population, next only to agriculture. However, there is a perception that handloom sector is for a particular social community, and it is a dying industry. We are introducing new products, new designs, and appropriate technologies. “This is a home based profession. Anybody with a short period of training, can start handloom production from a small space in his or her home, without having to go out for work, leaving family members. One can earn anywhere from Rs 30,000 to Rs 50,000 a month,” Mr Senthil said and added that there are 4.3 million people directly involved in the production in India. Every year the industry can create at least half a million new jobs.
During the launch event, AD Textile honored weavers. The event was attended by Music Director Mr Radhan of Arjun Reddy movie fame and actor Mr Subbu Panchu Arunachalam.