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Amazon enters SME dominated apparel sector

New Delhi, Apr 25 (KNN)  E-retailer major Amazon has entered the apparel segment, an area dominated by small and medium enterprises.  Announcing today its first move into apparels with the launch of Indo-western wear for women and ethnic wear, Amazon.in said it is working with over 30 artisan groups in various rural areas of India to offer handmade, traditional and folk embroidered dresses.

Most of the websites selling apparel and garments belong to the SME sector as in order to sell their brands, the SMEs open their online stores on websites like Ebay, Myntra, Jabong etc. Through opening the online shops, small traders from sectors like gems and jewellery, handicraft, leather, handloom, cut down on the cost of heavy rentals in the big cities for shops.

According to Apparel Export Promotion Council of India (AEPC), the Industry supports 7 million people to earn their livelihood and the number is expected to double by FY12. For every Rs 100,000 invested in the sector, an average of 7 additional jobs is created in the manufacturing sector which mostly consists of the small enterprises.

Online giant Amazon also announced the launch of dedicated sunglasses; contemporary and traditional styles apparels brands offered by private labels and national and regional retailers, there's a lot in store for the quintessential Indian women of today, Amazon.in a release said.

With a vast selection of fashion jewellery, watches, beauty products, handbags, clutches, shoes and now ethnic wear and sunglasses, Amazon.in offers a compelling fashion and lifestyle shopping destination for women, according to an official release by Amazon.

"With the launch of women's ethnic apparel and sunglasses, we now offer our women customers, the season's hottest fashion picks on their fingertips," Amazon India Category Leader- Fashion Vikas Purohit said.

The Ethnic Store at Amazon.in also has a huge collection of ethnic and contemporary Indian weaves in sarees, salwar suits, kurtas and more.

The store offers selection from a host of cities like Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Jaipur, Surat, Mathura, Coimbatore, as well as from the more popular cities of Mumbai and Delhi.

The Ethnic Store has brands like Soch, BIBA, W for Woman as well as certificated labels like Aheli that offer pure silk sarees certified by the Silk Board of India, according to the release.

“We have partnered with Hands of India (HOI), a Vrindaban-based organization that works with over 30 artisan groups in various rural areas of India to offer hand-woven lines in pure cotton and silk weaves like Bhagalpuri, Chanderi, Mangalgiri, Bandhej (tie & dye), Bengali Kantha, Rajasthani Kota and more, embellished with traditional and folk embroidery”, adds Purohit.

The apparel sector is one of the largest employers in the country and it also has a sizeable population. The sector is a great contributor towards foreign exchange earnings and employment generation. According to A report of the Working Group constituted by the Planning Commission on boosting India’s manufacturing exports during 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17), India’s exports of textiles and clothing is estimated at USD 64.41 bn by the end of March 2017.