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“We didn’t stop providing support for a single day during the pandemic situation – H N Ashiqur Rahman, Country Head, Brother Bangladesh.

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Brother Industrial Sewing Machine company is one of the top sewing machine manufacturers in the world which has been supporting the Bangladesh RMG industry with the most innovative technology and services for a long time. The company has a historical background of 113 years of business with operations in more than 50 countries headquartered in Japan. Brother ranked 130 among the top 750 multinationals and large companies across the world “The World’s Best Employers 2020” by Forbes. They have been working very closely with our industry for developing capabilities and productivity. In Bangladesh, the company’s operation is led by Mr. H N Ashiqur Rahman, Country Head, Brother Bangladesh. He is considered as one of the finest business leaders in the

Bangladesh Apparel industry having experience working in a leading role for more than a decade. Recently Team Textile Focus had a conversation with Mr. Ashiqur Rahman and he shared Brother’s journey & social initiative during the pandemic that helped our RMG industry a lot to improve cost-effectiveness and capacity. Key discussion points are mentioned-

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Mr. H N Ashiqur Rahman, Country Head, Brother Bangladesh.

Textile Focus: In this hard time, how do you see the RMG industry in Bangladesh?

H N Ashiqur Rahman: I would say that our RMG industry is in such a good situation compared to previous years ever. Our market share is growing in USA and EU markets. My observation is our garments industry has increased its capabilities during this time. Fast adaptation with pandemic helped our RMG industry a lot to make more business despite the global business curve. Garments factories also getting more orders. According to factory persons, most of the factories are booked with orders from buyers for the next 6 months. And we brother also experiencing almost double business volume this year.

Our factories producing value-added and fashionable products which were previously made in China and Vietnam mainly. Which is undoubtedly a good sign of growth. We can still increase our business and global brand value, if we can ensure strong collective negotiation with buyers, strong research and development of product design, raw material sourcing power and good communication with buyers & suppliers. But overall industry growth is satisfactory.

Textile Focus: How ‘Brother’ is supporting apparel industry during the pandemic?

H N Ashiqur Rahman: From the starting day of the pandemic till now, we are continuously supporting the factories. We didn’t stop providing support for a single day during the pandemic situation. As we believe, we made a business from this industry and now, in this hard time we have some opportunity to pay back to the industry.

Our noble initiatives from the starting of the pandemic was to design a guideline for machine safety and maintenance during long vacations. We introduced such guidelines so that factories can avoid unexpected machine errors if the industry stays closed for a long time. And that guideline was circulated among all garments factories. Another initiative was arranging training programs for factory people to engage them with technology that helped facto- ries to increase productivity.

We also introduced another successful and most effective project named ‘1Line assessment’. Under this assessment project, we select one factory and analyzed one particular line for finding bottlenecks, areas to improve productivity, developing a process that is absolutely free. We made this 1Line assess- ment for more than 200 factories and this project is still ongoing. This program had huge response in the industry.

Textile Focus: What are the latest innovations of ‘Brother’ to reduce the cost?

H N Ashiqur Rahman: Brother is a global company having 113 years of global reputation and we have strong research and development team. All of our machines are equipped with the latest innovation, however particularly if I mention, we recently launched a new single needle machine model name is S7180. It’s equipped with very latest features including short thread trimmer, auto foot lifter with very competitive price. This is the machine doesn’t need any helper for thread cutting that can reduce human resources. By this time this machine has got huge response from customers.

“We recently launched a new single needle machine model name is S7180. It’s equipped with very latest features including short thread trimmer, auto foot lifter with very competitive price”

IoT is another marvelous innovation, that is helping factory management to track production quantity, bottleneck, down machine numbers, productivity by sitting in the office or home using a laptop and even a mobile phone. This is a time befitting innovation I would say.

Textile Focus: How does Brother maintain sustainability?

H N Ashiqur Rahman: As a top global company Brother has been ranked 130 among 750 multinational & large companies across 45 countries as World best employers’ company. As Brother always gives importance to Earth, we maintain sustainability in every stage of production. We are using hazardous free materials in our machines. Brother aims to create and provide superior value underpinned by its “At your side” spirit.

As per Brother group new vision,” At your side 2030”, by being “At your side”, we enable people’s productivity and creativity. Contribute to society, and help protect the earth.

Textile Focus: Any plan for investing in BD?

H N Ashiqur Rahman: True to speaking we don’t have such a plan. Because Brother introduce any production facility, if required infrastructure facility is ensured 100% to maintain the brother quality.