Article : TIME N STYLE, Times of India May-Jun 2006
   
THE SATYA PAUL STORY...

 
   

Sanjay Kapoor, Managing Director, Genesis Colours Ovt. Ltd., the holding company of the premier designer label, Satya Paul, in conversation with Martin D'Souza

After acquiring the Satya Paul label in 2001, and the launch of the women's wear range of drapes and apparel under the same name, Sanjay Kapoor has moved into new territories with the acquisition of another designer label by Deepika Gehani. The former banker with a keen eye for fashion talks about his fascination for fashion and his plans for the future, and how he acquired the Satya Paul label...

Sanjay Kapoor's tryst with fashion...
An MBA from the University of Rochester in the United States, I commenced my career with the Citibank at Singapore and later moved to India. Despite being a successful banker armed with a management degree, I was bitten by the restlessness bug. When you have been blessed with a restless mind that wants fresh challenges, then a switchover from working for an organisation to creating an organisation happens very naturally. Hence I decided to take up the challenge of making a place for myself in the fashion world.

'Tie’ing them up…
During my phase as a banker I realised the deficiency of men’s wear accessories in the Indian fashion world. Since I also had this strong urge to do something on my own, I took the decision with my partner Jyoti Narula, to create more options for men by manufacturing ties, scarves and stoles.

Neckwear, a huge potential…
Ties occupy the center stage in a man’s wardrobe. A man’s tie has always had the status of a fashion statement. It imparts the right touch to a man’s grooming and underlines his confidence. A silk tie is no longer the preserve of just the nobility, but forms an essential part of a man’s attire. As I said earlier, I had realised the paucity of options in the men’s accessories segment. This acute paucity prompted me to tie up with Satya Paul and move into manufacturing ties to create choices and fill in that vacuum.

The deal…
In the year 2001, Jyoti Narula and I teamed up with Puneet Nanda (Satya Paul’s son) to establish Genesis Colors and manufacture women’s wear with the aim of creating the first label of substance that would appeal to the contemporary woman as well as have an international appeal.

The growth…
The move into women’s wear and into the thick of the fashion world happened as a natural progression in the process of growth. We established Genesis Colors to manufacture women’s wear and the rest as they say, is history! The year 2002, witnessed a turning point in the growth of the Satya Paul label. With aggression, and panache mingled together, the Satya Paul design studio established itself firmly in the Indian Fashion world. We inducted the concept of setting ramp shows to ‘live’ classical music. In 2003, we associated with the art of famed artists from across the continents, to create concepts that caused a furore in the Indian Design world! Indeed, our signature series of drapes, apparel and accessories were hailed as “the best prints in the world”! The famed Satya Paul saries and prints acquired a brand presence all their own.

Going international…
With the intention to reach to an international audience we held shows overseas in rarefied locales such as Madame Tussauds at London in the year 2003. In the ensuing months, the Satya Paul label set the International catwalk afire with trailblazing concepts and prints. Madame Tussauds was followed by shows at New York, Long Island, Chicago, Singapore, Dubai, Kenya and Malaysia at the Kuala Lumpur Fashion Week to name a few. Since the year 2002, the swiftly growing Satya Paul design studio turned into a powerhouse by establishing a retail presence of 15 standalone stores at present, at all the major cities across India. We are scouting for opportunities to set up the same overseas too. The year 2004, also witnessed our association with cause-related activities. We have hosted shows to help gather funds for breast cancer, underprivileged sections of the society and last year to raise funds for those affected by Tsunami.

There’s no bizz like showbiz…
With a savvy bit of marketing we have found a foothold in the world of showbiz by designing for various characters of popular soaps on the television and the Femina Miss Indias’ wardrobes for International pageants.

Corporate’s the way to be…
We have the singular distinction of establishing a distinct corporate structure modeled on a time-tested overseas business module, with organisational hierarchies, for effective expansion and future growth of the label. Treating corporatisation as a principal issue of critical importance we have created distinct divisions to allow the creative processes to continue effectively with minimal hindrances. The company has thus acquired more flexibility in pursuing commercial opportunities, to be pro-active in a rapidly changing consumer market.

The Indian market…
The Indian urban consumer is not only becoming more and more brand conscious but is also moving towards very high-end brands. Even the forbidding price tags of most of these products do not seem to deter consumers across metros. A specific case in point is the luxury grooming market that is pegged at Rs.3000 crore annually and is growing by 30-40 per cent annually, according to industry estimates. Consumer groups across the spectrum are driving the demand. The new consumer in India has the purchasing power with a growing desire to spend on personal gratification. The juggernaut of liberalisation gathering momentum each day, is opening up markets in India as well as overseas, for both the indigenous brands as well as industries of western world, to cross boundaries and tap unlimited potential, especially in the retail segment of Lifestyle brands.
Indeed, India seems to be poised on the very brink of a retail revolution!

 

 



       
       
   

 

 
 
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Copyright 2006 Martin D'Souza. All rights reserved.