Intertek is a leading provider of quality and safety solutions serving a wide range of industries around the world. From auditing and inspection, to testing, quality assurance and certification, Intertek people are dedicated to adding value to customers’ products and processes, supporting their success in the global marketplace. Customers of Intertek include some of the world’s leading brands, major global and local companies and governments.
Intertek with centres in major garment manufacturing hubs in India has made an impact on the industry with its commitment to not only certify but also to support as a provider of quality and safety solutions adding value to customers’ products and processes. “We cannot afford to be complacent as the global garment industry is dictated by the needs of the end-customer who is becoming more and more particular on what he/she is willing to accept for every penny spent,” reasons Vanni Treves, Chairman, Intertek.
India is the sixth largest country of operation for Intertek and is undisputedly a huge potential market for Intertek. Vanni Treves, Chairman, and Wolfhart Hauser, CEO of the group have many expectations from the country. In an exclusive interaction with Team StitchWorld, they share the vision of Intertek in the backdrop of impending global recession.
The company with an upfront strategy is looking for growth pockets not necessarily in relation to exports but also within the fast developing retail segment. “The Indian market is evolving with regards to quality, safety and environment issues, presenting a vast arena for involvement of our services to companies working in domestic retail that include Auditing and inspection, testing, quality assurance and certification,” says Hauser. “The involvement of Intertek at the retail level will upgrade processes and products for retail, which will in fact add an edge to manufacturing in the country,” he adds.
With a global network of more than 1,000 laboratories and offices and over 23,000 people in 110 countries around the world, Intertek is tuned into the pulse of the international benchmarks and evolving standards that are challenging the industry almost on a daily basis. With brands and retailers worldwide committed to CSR issues associated with the manufacturing of a product right from where the item is made to how it is shipped out. Each and every process is under scrutiny today and Intertek is well aware and well prepared to meet every challenge.
Involvement of Intertek at the retail level will upgrade processes and products for retail, adding an edge to manufacturing in the country.” – Wolfhart Hauser, CEO, Intertek Group
In fact, even the economic crisis is not a deterrent. “The economist may talk about global meltdown and how prices are shrinking and cost cutting is the way to go, but there is no compromise on issues that go into defining ‘compliance’ in its broadest description by any buyer, as the need is customer driven,” says Treves. “I think that complying with these emotional issues related to manufacturing are even more important in these difficult times as they are the differentials that guide the consumer when deciding on what to buy,” adds Hauser.
Whatever the scenario, there cannot be a reversal of the initiatives that have shaped the outsourcing policy of major retailers, and Intertek with its world class labs and trained staff is facilitating the process. “Many in the industry do not realize that the cost of auditing both for quality and CSR issues is very little as compared to the cost of the product and in fact it adds value to the product in the eyes of the final consumer,” avers Hauser.
“We cannot afford to be complacent as the global garment industry is dictated by the needs of the end customer who is becoming more and more particular on what he/she is willing to accept for every penny spent.” – Vanni Treves, Chairman, Intertek
In fact, the vision for Intertek is driven by market realities, “and the market reality is that all products, however simple and whatever may be the destination needs to be tested for standards determined by consumers for all conceivable property and risks,” says Treves. Further, no retailer can afford to lose reputation and market share by ignoring the reality. So the services at Intertek are expanding to keep pace and in some cases ahead of market demands. While adding new areas of testing, the company is also looking to support the industry with updates on what the customer wants from them by way of seminars, interactions, open forums, etc.
“So in reality we look upon our role as improving the ability to market a product rather then check the ‘faults’ in relation to the expectations of consumers in different parts of the world,” concludes Treves. No wonder the company is projecting growth for India operations even when the global economy is enveloped in recession, and to support growth there are plans to increase its staff strength from the present 1,000 to 2,500 over the next three years and work to upgrade laboratories across the country.