Reliance Retail, designer Ritu Kumar join hands to promote Indian crafts globally
New Delhi: Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd (RRVL) has acquired a 52 percent stake in veteran couturier Ritu Kumar's firm Ritika Pvt Ltd for an undisclosed amount.
The collaboration aims to charter new, untried interpretation of Indian crafts and textiles that will take the story of the country’s artisanal culture beyond existing ideas in couture and fashion.
"RRVL's majority equity acquisition in Ritika Pvt Ltd included completely acquiring Everstone's 35 percent stake in the company," a joint statement said.
Everstone is a global equity firm.
Ritu Kumar's business includes four fashion brand portfolios — Label Ritu Kumar, RI Ritu Kumar, aarké and Ritu Kumar Home & Living — and cumulatively retails out of 151 point of sales globally.
While the brands retain the core Ritu Kumar design DNA of embroidery, artisanal crafts and prints, each has a distinct brand definition.
"The partnership aims to highlight India's re-emerging role in the international couture industry, through parallel tracks of sustenance and innovation. The goal is to re-interpret age-old designs, motifs and patterns that nest under the vast repository of crafts for modern accessories, stylish, textile-rich clothes and distinct couture from India," it said.
Last week, Reliance Brands Ltd (RBL) announced that it will buy a 40 percent stake in renowned fashion designer Manish Malhotra's MM Styles Pvt Ltd.
"Continuing with RRVL's refocused attention towards value creation through developing and supporting home-grown talent rooted in Indian design sensibilities, this partnership with the matriarch of Indian fashion Ritu Kumar will set a benchmark in this journey," it said.
RRVL Director Isha Ambani said very few countries can match the sophistication, style and originality of design, especially in printing and painting of textiles and weaves, found in India. "We are delighted to partner with Ritu Kumar, who possesses strong brand recognition, potential for scale, and innovation in fashion and retail all key ingredients to build a complete lifestyle brand".
"Together, we want to build a robust platform and customer ecosystem for our native textiles and crafts both in India and across the world so that our crafts receive the honour and recognition they deserve in international couture," she added.
Ritu Kumar said this very optimistic collaboration will further the work she started in researching and reviving India's textile history and wealth while highlighting our design ability.
"It’s a story that needs to be told again. Once upon a time, India had 57 percent of the world’s GDP dependent only on its textiles” said Kumar, the founder of India’s oldest fashion house.
The partnership will continue to build the business through the patronage of Indian crafts people. This will be achieved through skill enhancement and technological enablement of crafts and market engagement across retail channels in India and international geographies.
RRVL, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd, is the holding company of Reliance Retail Ltd, which operates the retail business. The company reported a consolidated turnover of Rs 157,629 crore and net profit of Rs 5,481 crore for the year ended March 31, 2021.
With inputs from PTI
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