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Dicitex Furnishings Makes Big Bet on Velvet Production; Buys 25 Looms from Belgium’s Vlaamse Velours Industries

Rajjnish Arora

MUMBAI — Dicitex Furnishings Pvt. has purchased 25 dobby velvet looms from Vlaamse Velours Industries near Kortrijk, Belgium and is in the process of setting up the machinery in a 30,000 square foot weaving shed in Tarapoor, India.

“By June, we expect to produce FR velvets and cotton and viscose qualities in piece dyes,” says Rajjnish Arora, Vice Chairman of Dicitex. “This could be a $25 million business for Dicitex exceeding 1.8 million meters in velvets by 2016,” he confirmed.

Dicitex Velvets will produce 54 inch goods stocked in 25 colors for the local Indian market but since the line is piece dyed, custom colors are available for export for both residential and contract, Arrora emphasizes. Dicitex has aligned itself with Pride Stores in India for the velvet program, gaining valuable window space for its velvets. Dicitex will

supply 120 books, 5,000 sku’s for 50 shop in shops.

Ms Aasshna Arora, 21, Rajjnish’s daughter, is joining Dicitex in August after graduating Nottingham University to head up the retail distribution of the velvets. She is the third generation family member to join the business of 3,500 employees.

Dicitex says it is producing 80,000 meters of all fabrics per day with sales at the $150 million mark, making it one of the top three mills in the world. “Our aim now is to be number one in velvets in the world,” Arora says.

He feels that chenille is still important to the market. We are reducing the weight of our chenille fabric with vigorous pricing. I still feel the Middle East is a good market for chenilles.”“Other export markets want velvet, embroidered cotton fabrics and flat woven damask jacquards.”

He confirmed that the owners of VVI will help establish the mill and give technical guidance on the proper preparation and shipment of the new velvet lines. The Dicitex staff will be responsible for shipping and installing the looms with the guidance of the former owners. “The owners of VVI are leaving their velvet business since they are in their 60’s and have no heirs,” Arora commented. Vlaamse was a supplier of velvets to European editeurs since 1990. The two principals of Vlaamse expect to continue as agents to other velvet mills, it was learned by F&FI.

Dicitex had already been making plain and jacquard velvets in piece dye yarn dye. Price points for the lines are in the $10-$12 range for jacquard velvets and $70$9 for plains per meter.

“With the new installation, we will be one of the largest velvet mills in the world, producing 150,000 meters a month, Arora said. “The potential with plain velvets is huge.

Dicitex Adds Bedding Business Under Sonali Arora

Sonali and Nimish Arora
MUMBAI, India — Dicitex Furnishings Pvt. has named Sonali Arora Manager of its new bed sheet business featuring Warner Bros. characters in Asia under license according to Nimish Arora, General Manager of Dicitex and husband of Sonali.

“Sonali has successfully managed our five Tresorie stores operation in India for the past 5 years, now a $5 million business. Arora expects she will build a $10 million business under the ‘DC Tex’ bedding brand.

The Dicitex bed sheet business features Superman and Batman printed on the Dicitex Reggiani machine. Cut and sew occurs in Tirrappur under the same roof in 50,000 square foot factory, Nimish says. The company expects to sell these lines in Bhutan,

Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Africa, and other neighboring countries according to Nimish.

“We gained many customers for the bed lines at Heimtextil where we had a separate stand in Hall 10,” he said. Besides the Warner Bros, license, Dicitex is selling 180 sku’s in all sizes, digitally printed, embroidered and quilted. The markets for these products include Russia, Belgium, Germany, and Mexico, he said.

The bed lines are said to be competitively priced at $18-$20 per set for queen-size and king is priced at $35 to the wholesaler. Alvisi, an Italian designer, designs some products Nimish adds.

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