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Women Leaders in Fashion Retail: Anju Modi, MD, Anju Modi, Anjuman Brand Designs

Women today are undeniably breaking down barriers in various sectors, and this transformative spirit is equally prevalent in India’s thriving fashion retail industry. As India rapidly inches towards becoming a global fashion powerhouse, fierce competition among numerous brands has emerged, each striving for excellence in terms of quality and customer satisfaction.

Within an industry predominantly tailored to women, female business owners often remain a minority. Women entrepreneurs face a unique set of challenges, distinct from those encountered by their male counterparts. Despite these hurdles, many women find themselves adeptly managing multiple roles, effectively turning their entrepreneurial aspirations into tangible achievements. These remarkable accomplishments not only serve as a source of inspiration but also pave the way for more women to venture into the dynamic world of fashion retail.

This week, IMAGES Business of Fashion takes a closer look at yet another inspiring journey of a powerful women entrepreneur – Anju Modi. Here’s all you need to know about her journey in fashion retail!

Personal Life

Having the compassionate soul of an artist, every layer of Anju Modi’s personality is reflected in her body of work. Guided by her love for textiles and the Indian craft, her ethos is also the tenets behind the 27-year-old label – Timeless, vintage, handcrafted and organic.

Career History and Experience

  • Established in 1990, Anju Modi revitalizes traditional Indian crafts through couture and ready-to-wear collections, empowering rural communities. 
  • Her extensive library of research covers weaving, dyeing, block printing, and embroidery.
  • Notably, she revived forgotten techniques in Varanasi, Rajasthan, and Chanderi, and collaborated with organizations like UNIDO, craftvillage.org, and FDCI.
  • Her achievements include recognition at the Hyères Fashion Festival and Marie Claire’s Made in India awards.
  • She has also worked as a costume designer in movies like Bajirao Mastani, and Ramleela alongside making collaborations with India’s Ministry of Tourism.

Current Role and Responsibilities 

At present, Anju Modi oversees the overall operations, strategic planning, and business development of the fashion brand. Her responsibilities include leading the creative direction, managing the production processes, fostering collaborations, ensuring financial viability, and maintaining brand reputation in the Indian fashion industry

Strengths and Weaknesses 

Anju Modi outlined her professional strengths and weaknesses saying, “My greatest strength lies in my ability to remain incredibly calm and patient, even during challenging moments. I take pride in being an organised individual, something that allows me to efficiently handle multiple tasks within a business environment. I also possess an innate curiosity that keeps me engaged and interested in every aspect of life.”

“My weaknesses are that sometimes I tend to place a great deal of trust in others, overlooking their true intentions and value. I tend to not always take life as seriously as I should, which can occasionally hinder my approach to certain situations. There are moments when I feel the urge to leave everything behind and embark on new adventures.”

Anju Modi’s Aspirations

Giving us insights about her aspiration in business she said, I have a vision to establish a research and development center for talented craftspersons, empowering them to showcase their skills on a global platform.”

Skills that Helped Her Succeed

Anju Modi elaborated on the specific skill set that enabled her to bring more authenticity and precision when running her business. She said, “My adeptness in sketching allows me to visualize and translate ideas into designs. Additionally, my extensive travels to villages and international destinations have enabled me to gain a profound understanding of various crafts, enriching my designs with cultural depth and authenticity.”

Her Take on the Future of the Industry

To this she said, “With expanding markets and evolving consumer preferences, there is ample room for growth and innovation. Embracing sustainable practices, incorporating advanced technologies, and prioritising ethical production will shape the industry’s trajectory.”

She further spoke to us about the changes that she brought about in her business – those that helped it grow and expand while making a meaningful impact. She said, “In my business, I have introduced handloom and khadi, creating a significant impact and generating immense respect among global audiences. I have also focused on bringing design changes and contemporizing traditional crafts, which has been a major contribution. These efforts have allowed me to make a meaningful impact in my work.”

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