Eastman Technocrafts Limited, in association with Morgan Tecnica – the Italy-based cutting room solution provider (automatic spreaders, spreading tables, labellers, automatic cutters, software for CAD, Cut Order Planning, PDM and Virtual Fitting) – recently organized a seminar titled ‘Fashion Technology Event’ at Hotel Le Méridien, Dhaka, to introduce the existing clients with various new developments of the company while also trying to bring about awareness on the need of automation for the Bangladesh RMG industry, the second largest garment exporter in the world.

The country already has 100 Morgan spreaders installed at various factories, and moving forward the company is seriously thinking of opening a training centre in Bangladesh given the huge potential of the technology. The attractiveness of Morgan solutions lay in the huge reduction of manpower by an average 60 per cent which is very important today, as labour cost is rising year on year. On the side-lines of the event, Team Apparel Online caught up with the Managing Director of Eastman Technocrafts Limited (sole agent for Morgan’s solutions in Bangladesh), Manik Lal Chowdhury and Country Manager of Morgan Tecnica, Prakhar , for a candid interaction. The duo gave a lowdown on various issues related to cutting room technology, need for automation, and about Morgan’s solutions for the Bangladesh industry… Excerpts from the discussion:

AO: The market for cutting room solutions is big in Bangladesh and growing, how are you marketing yourself differently?

Prakhar: Though the industry is receptive, but they ought to understand first what are the kinds of solutions we have for them. Unlike other companies in the field, Morgan offers its solutions very differently. We take up each job as a turnkey project – taking care of everything, including total number of pieces produced in a company. Automation is the need of the hour and we approach companies which need to be updated on why automation is necessary.

This seminar is one of the efforts by us to build awareness, which will be followed by many such events to be organized by Morgan in association with Eastman in Bangladesh. In exhibitions, people come to just see the products but when we call them in seminars, the focus is more on awareness building and introducing them to the various solutions provided by Morgan.

The market has lot of potential and since last two years we are working very aggressively to capture more customers. Morgan already has a very good clientele base in Bangladesh and there are many who have gone in for repeat orders with us and we are also expecting many more repeat orders, which is indicative of the huge market for automatic cutters and spreaders.

AO: Do the companies here ask for fully-integrated cutting room solutions or are they interested more in single machines?

Prakhar: It depends on what kind of volume one is doing. For example, if you ask about groups like Fakir and Metro, they go for full solutions – right from the software, spreading machines, to conveyorized tables, cutters, spreaders, everything.

Manik: Along with Fakir and Metro, there are many other upcoming factories like Pakiza Industries, Iris Industries, Mahmud Attires (a part of Rising Group which is foraying from woven to knits), besides another 10-12 more clients, who want the complete solution from us.

The need of the industry today is services; buying a machine is easy but utilizing that optimally is the complicated part. I have seen many factories, where cutters installed by some of our competitors are lying idle due to lack of training and services.

Our cutting room solutions facilitate average saving of 2 per cent fabrics, which amounts to a huge quantity considering the capacity and volumes of most of the factories here.

Morgan also has software for all requirements, which are also highly efficient, including the widely-used Cut Order Planning (COP) and Enterprise Information Portals (EIP) software for fabric sourcing.

AO: Apparel industry in Bangladesh is known for volumes. How does that reflect in their higher need for automation?

Prakhar: Of course, higher the number of garments produced, higher would be the need of manpower as well as rate of rejection. If garment manufacturers go for automation they can actually save upon raw materials, reduce manpower as well as enhance quality of garments. In my opinion, rejection of an apparel item starts at the cutting level and not at the stitching point.

AO: Are the companies, using your machines, able to optimally utilize the benefits of your solutions, most relevant for this industry?

Prakhar: Our machines are well-equipped and efficient but the industry lacks in skilled operators along with the production methods. This is where the companies need education. Keeping this in consideration, Morgan has started a training centre in Bangalore (India) wherein garment manufacturers can send their teams so that we can train them on how to effectively utilize the machines and teach the correct production methods, depending upon the kind of applications they are using. To get optimum output, these two issues need to be addressed.We have recently opened a training centre in Honduras, and in the third phase we would think about Bangladesh.

All our solutions are very useful – both the existing and the upcoming ones, including the 3D software, which would be unveiled shortly by Morgan. Pin Table is another solution which is very much important for Bangladesh garment industry.

AO: Given the current market scenario, what kind of growth are you expecting in the coming days?

Prakhar: Manual cutting consumes a lot of space and automations – the only solution for garment manufacturers, challenged by space constraint. This is another reason why we feel there is a lot of scope for automats in this market, provided the customers also show interest in implementing the same.

Manik: As things are looking, I am sure our sales would increase more than 40 per cent by 2017. This is because there is a lot of demand for cutting room solutions. Though there are considerable numbers of players in this segment but none could guarantee performance as Morgan. Ours is a unique technology which takes care of all aspects of garment manufacturing – from sourcing, buying fabrics and accessories to management requirements. Lectra specialises on cutters, Gerber on software but Morgan is a complete solution provider.

AO: Since after-sales service is one of the major components in customer conversion, where does Morgan stand in this respect?

Prakhar: Service is the backbone of any company; this is one area where we cannot be complacent and work continuously for improvement. As a solution and service provider, we have a robust after-sales service mechanism in place. Apart from our own staff, there are six service engineers from Eastman who are dedicated only for Morgan. They are shortly going to India to attend a technical seminar conducted by Morgan to teach service managers from the vendors’ side on various technical aspects to equip them to provide even better services in their respective markets.

Manik: In addition, we have also hired a highly-qualified and experienced technical help from Sri Lanka, Janaka Udaya Kumar Perera. With more than 30 years’ experience, he has joined us as a Sales & Technical Consultant. Under him there would be 62 engineers to cater to the clients’ problems and queries. In Chittagong, we have another 22 engineers. So strong is our focus on after-sales that half of our total expenditure is actually used to beef up the technical team.

Maryan Barbara
Maryan Barbara

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