Sustainability Efforts by LNJ – A Talk With Suketu Shah – Head LNJ Denim
LNJ denim is a part of the RSWM Ltd., the flagship company of LNJ Bhilwara Group. The group exports its yarns and fabrics to over 78 countries around the world. Their denim division is headed by CEO Mr Suketu Shah . We spoke to him about the various aspects of Indian denim industry , their company and specially their efforts in sustainability- where they a special focus . We bring a part of the discussion below :
RSWM group has a long history in Indian textile industry. Please tell us about its background and how LNJ denim has developed as part of this group.
RSWM Limited, the flagship company of LNJ Bhilwara group, founded in 1961, is one of the largest textile manufacturers in the country, primarily producing the best quality of yarns like synthetic, blended, melange, cotton, speciality yarns and the value added – suiting and Denim fabric. The denim division “LNJ Denim” was established in 2007 and has a installed capacity of 25.0 MMA. Over the last 13 years since its existence, the denim division has earned good reputation among the international and domestic brands, as an innovative and quality denim fabric supplier.
When did LNJ started to seriously think about working on sustainability and how did the process go ahead?
Sustainability initiative has always been within the radar of LNJ Denim since its existence. As a responsible corporate the group has been investing towards this initiative few being – garnetting machine for recycling used garments, wind/solar/hydro energy for running its processes to reduce carbon emissions. LNJ denim is a Zero Liquid Discharge with a robust ETP which helps in treating all the effluents & recycling the water, saving more than 486 Kilo litres of water per annum. Apart from these process/technology initiatives the product development team ( Referred as DIG – Denim Intelligence Group) effectively works with many leading brands in developing eco-friendly products using organic / BCI cotton or bio-degradable manmade fibres.
ECO’ VERSE is the new sustainable collection that you have created. What is special about it and how does it address the 3 Rs REDUCE RECYCLE and REUSE?
Ecoverse is the sustainability part of our SS21 collection which has been created using products which are designed with various eco-friendly concepts.. There would be products using fibres like Hemp, Ecovero, Refibra, Livaeco which are generated using sustainable processes & are bio-degradable reducing load on the landfills. Few products are developed using the recycle poly made from pet bottles or recycle cotton fibre made from post consumer used garments. Also included are products made from Natural indigo.
You mention that LNJ Is among the most innovative global denim companies. Why do you feel so?
LNJ with its strong marketing and design teams work very closely with many international and national level brands regularly on various innovative concepts & collections. With more than 60% of the capacity been sold to brands across the globe, the teams are well aligned & pushed for innovations 24*7.
Indian industry has been going through a tough phase with oversupply and restrained demand affecting growth. How has LNJ come out over these times and how do you see the near future?
Yes looking at the unbalanced demand-supply ratio specially in denims, the industry has been going through a tough phase over the last 4 years. This was further accentuated by few policy modifications like demonetisation & later GST implementation which resulted in complete drought specially in domestic market. LNJ was no exception and like all other players struggled in these tough times. However with its balanced customer-mix, continued product innovations, controlled production & inventory, LNJ has been able to sail through, still far from expectations but somehow managing to stay-foot to survive this turbulence. The industry is far from normalcy till the demand-supply equation is balanced, unless you are have a robust customer network, product innovations and controlled costs its difficult to survive. LNJ continues to work on these principles and hopefully things will improve going forward.
You have a very long experience in the Indian denim industry and have contributed significantly to some of the best companies in the industry. How do you think the industry has changed in the last 2 decades?
Industry has changed dramatically in last few years. It is purely on Indian trade market more inclined towards Knit look products and very clean products with good stretch levels for comfort. It has completely moved on higher width and more darker shade requirements. But at the same time 3/1 is still equally prominent with all the brands in place and it has equivalent share in the market. Quality , services, new developments, sustainability, price etc are given parameters for good players.
What 3 products from LNJ stable would you say address the key global denim trends .
Currently products using sustainable fibres like Hemp, Ecovero & also the one developed using Bio-indigo are key hot trends globally.