How Welspun Group Is Spinning the Textile Industry

Dipali Goenka, CEO and joint managing director at Welspun India, took the reins of the textile business of the group in 2008 and by 2010 she was in a position to roll up her sleeves and take on the plant

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She started working at the age of 30 and went on to build one of the biggest textile empires of the country. Dipali Goenka, CEO and joint managing director at Welspun India, took the reins of the textile business of the group in 2008 and by 2010 she was in a position to roll up her sleeves and take on the plant. However, the journey wasn't easy, she said.

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"The textile business is very different and more male dominated. Understanding from scratch was the key and as I learnt from the business, I also believed in using my strengths. It worked for me," said Goenka.

From understanding consumer needs to coming up with innovation, she has juggled many roles. Goenka always believed in working differently. "It's not only about manufacturing, we consider ourselves the FMCG for textiles. From understanding the customer needs to looking at the infrastructure or supply chain to dealing with analytics and technology, it's a comprehensive process."

For any company, innovation is the key to success and Welspun is no different. It believes that innovation can never work in isolation. "It is important to understand what the consumer is looking at and accordingly create the need."

Hygrocotton is one of the most raved innovations of the company that has been crafted with the spinning technology, producing yarn with a revolutionary hollow core. "Apart from Hygrocotton, which helps in temperature regulations, we also have anti-allergic fabrics, these products have helped us make a difference in innovation and impact the lives of our customers."

The pandemic has rocked businesses and thrown up many challenges. But, was it a blessing in disguise for the company? With the onset of COVID-19, people were confined to homes leading to an increased demand in home care products. However, the demand came with its set of challenges. "For the first two months our factories were shut. Taking care of our employees was the most important aspect. As people were confined to homes, the demand for home care products just crossed the roof."

Catering to this need was difficult as COVID-19 disrupted the entire supply chain. What helped the company spring back to action was its ancillary vendor system. "The whole supply chain, analytics and speed to market were critical. Servicing the customers at the point of sale was possible because of our ancillary vendor system. From packaging to yarns and trims the velocity of delivery was accelerated because of our thriving ancillary ecosystem."

She also emphasized on the need of meeting the environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals and elaborated on how the company is recycling water. "The entire textile industry should work on meeting the ESG goals. The 30 million water that our plant uses is completely recycled and we have a goal setting targets for green energy and carbon footprint."

Whether it's rags, plastics, wooden palettes, everything finds its way back to operations at Welspun. "Our story is not only about meeting the sustainability goals, it's also about creating empowerment and social businesses," said the joint managing director.