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Fashion Leaders: Darpan Kapoor of Kapsons Group

No business can survive for long without a vision; even if it does, it would be susceptible to every disruption and upheaval that generally comes in its business cycle. It needs a leader who has the capacity to translate, create that vision, or make it clearer and turn it into reality. The very essence of leadership is having a vision in the first place. Moreover, as you can’t blow an uncertain trumpet, it should be clearly articulated so that they can manage and lead people. A team led by a visionary leader with a clear direction knows what it can achieve and how far it can go.

In this special feature, IMAGES Business of Fashion highlights the brand icons in India’s thriving fashion and lifestyle industry. This week, the spotlight is on…

Darpan Kapoor

Chairman, Kapsons Group

Education profile 

Graduation in Heavy Machinery

Career history and experience 

Vipin Kapoor and I co-founded Kapsons in 1989, a single store in the heart of Chandigarh with a team of 8. Today, the brand is spread across 24 stores in 19 cities, and 6 states, capturing hearts in the North. But it doesn’t end there; these 33 years have seen the brand Kapsons build itself into the conglomerate, Kapsons Group, with multiple sister companies, holding expertise in retail, under its umbrella: Kapsons Fashion Pvt. Ltd., Kapsons Retail Pvt. Ltd., Kapsons Agency, Kapsons Entertainment Pvt. Ltd., Kapsons International, and Krest Solutions.

Strengths & weaknesses 

I’d say my strengths are consistency, hard work, and progressive thinking. As for my weaknesses, I can be a little impulsive and impatient when it comes to getting results.

Aspirations you want to fulfill 

As they say, “leave things better than you found them,” and when it’s the business you’ve dedicated half of your life to it that the aspirations are gone through the roof. One thing I do aspire is to establish such a strong foundation through leadership that keeps the legacy of Kapsons thriving through the decades to come.

Game-changing retail technologies according to you 

It is a digital age and advancing with technology is what will keep you in business. Business automation has proven to be extremely helpful these last few years. Digitizing inventory in such a way that balance is maintained, all the while retaining human touch and personalisation helps in the visibility of data, which can be a game-changer.

Skills that helped you succeed in this industry 

Coming from a background in machinery, keeping up with new cutting-edge technology has always been a primary focus. A progressive attitude and future thinking towards automation have definitely helped in minimizing manpower and increasing profitability for the business.

Lessons learned over the years 

Growth is of the utmost importance, bearing in mind that you are proȱ ting side by side. Growth without profitability does not make for a sensible business. It goes hand in hand with patience, time, and consistency. When building your business, something to keep in mind is to make it so that the upcoming leaders don’t have to begin from scratch and that the business strategy looks to the future with modernisation as the goal.

Your take on the future of industry 

Ecommerce and omnichannel shopping experiences are driving exponential changes in the retail industry. Direct-to-consumer strategies will be boosted, first-party data will be used more and supply chain efficiency will be imperative in 2023.

Any role model in the industry 

Shailesh Chaturvedi.

If you had to pen down your top 3 learnings from your careers 

It is said that Rome was not built in a day. Creating a successful business requires patience, time, and consistency. A second lesson is that a business can’t be profitable without taking risks. Last but not least, a person should remember to keep an eye on the future.

Life mantra 

I live by the rule, “work hard, party harder.” If you put your heart and soul into something to make it the best you possibly could, you deserve to have a blast later.

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