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01-August-2014

US-based WL Ross & Co, which specialises in restructuring financially distressed companies globally, is looking to invest in India's textile business after the Narendra Modi government laid out proposals in the recent budget to revive the sector.

"We have looked at some opportunities here and, in fact, some are from the textiles industry," managing director of WL Ross, Mr. David Wax said.

The company currently owns a 94 per cent stake in 90-year-old fabric manufacturer OCM and is exploring other investment opportunities. "We have a tremendous belief that there are terrific opportunities with 1.25 billion people and a growing middle class in India," Mr. Wax Said.

In the budget, finance minister Mr. Arun Jaitley unveiled a host of proposals to boost the textile sector, including a provision of Rs 200 crore for setting up mega-clusters at Varanasi, Bareilly, Lucknow, Surat, Kutch, Bhagalpur, Mysore and one in Tamil Nadu.

The textile sector currently contributes 14 per cent to industrial production, 4 per cent to gross domestic product and 11 per cent to India's export earnings. In the past seven years, WL Ross has brought 350 million US dollar into the country.

OCM is expected to see its best quarter ever in terms of financial performance, driven by a slew of initiatives taken to revive the company. It has also launched a ready-to-wear range for both men and women, including suits, jackets and saris, besides selling expensive products such as ties, pocket squares and fabrics from Italy.

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