For global India designer, home is where the money is

Fri Mar 27, 2009 12:56am EDT
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By Shilpa Jamkhandikar

MUMBAI (Reuters Life!) - Sabyasachi Mukherjee, one of India's best-known fashion designers at home and abroad, has a few words of advice for others seeking to make their name internationally: forget global, stay local.

Mukherjee, who has shown collections at several fashion events in Europe and the United States, dresses top Bollywood actors and the elite of Indian society.

He is due to display his latest fall/winter collection on Friday, the opening day of one of Mumbai's biggest fashion event, the Lakme Fashion Week, which features 73 designers and over a hundred buyers.

Fashion experts and buyers peg Mukherjee as one of the few Indian designers who can make it big abroad, but he told Reuters he's happier sticking to expanding his business at home.

Q: How important is the international market for you?

A: "With the way the world economy is going right now, this is not the time for Indian designers to step out. It is more the time to step it up within their country. International brands are going to swoop down on slightly secure economies and because they are suffering to a large extent in the West.

Somewhere down the line there will be a lot of internal thinking and people will realize they are better off at home. India is internalizing, and I think people are going to start upholding the Indian tradition very strongly. That's why my plan for the next few years is to concentrate and extend my business within this country."

Q: If that is the case what kind of importance would you give any international business that came your way?   Continued...