By B K Goenka, Chairman, Welspun
I believe being resilient during unprecedented circumstances while staying committed to the principles of innovation and ESG is a hallmark of sustainable businesses
At Welspun, we believe in creating shared value and pursuing the path of inclusive growth, with circularity embedded across our entire value chain. In line with this objective, WIL has set benchmarks for the industry through its differentiated efforts in all areas of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) where several significant outcomes have already been achieved. This has been reflected in the rating by Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), one of the world’s foremost sustainability indices, as part of its corporate sustainability assessment 2021, where the Company secured an ESG rating of 48 which is 62% higher than the average industry score. Another significant recognition during FY22 came from the Government of India, with WIL being ranked 1st under ‘Best Industry’ category at the National Water Awards by the Union Ministry of Jal Shakti for its water stewardship. The Company was also recognised with a Jury Special Mention Award for its STP to recycle and reuse domestic sewage at the Frost & Sullivan and TERI’s Sustainability 4.0 Awards 2021, which honoured companies embedding Sustainability with Economic Value Creation.
Despite historically high levels of commodity prices, logistics disruptions, persistence of the pandemic, and onset of the Ukraine-Russia conflict, Welspun India Limited delivered revenue growth of 27%, with the core business of Home Textiles alone crossing the billion-dollar mark in FY22. FMCG of home textiles is now a reality While the core B2B continued to be strong, it is heartening that the emerging businesses of Brands, E-commerce, Flooring and Advanced Textiles together grew by 44% during the year and contributed 26% to overall revenues. Our brands have been witnessing a rapid increase in awareness and acceptance with revenue growth of 40% with a strong traction in the international and domestic markets. Two of our brands in the domestic market – SPACES and Welspun have independently gained recognition.
Our expanded retail footprint in 6,642 stores across 482 towns, resulted in the Domestic Retail business delivering a growth of 66% during the year and recording its highest-ever revenue. The recently launched Flooring business too registered new milestones, with over 100% growth on the back of considerable investments in the state-of-the-art plant, expansion into new geographies, and two patent filings. On an overall basis, WIL has 35 patents filed globally, the largest for any Home Textiles player, enabling our unwavering focus on innovation as a key value driver.
Welspun has been industry leading, driven by its unparalleled competitive edge that comes from a highly-differentiated business model, investments in new-age technologies like Blockchain, and unique value proposition to customers. Some of the macro headwinds do continue to persist and even rise in intensity, inflationary pressures being a major one. We are seeing inflation, particularly in Western economies, rise to levels not seen in several years. This is likely to affect business and consumer sentiment in the medium term. As a business, however, we remain focused on strengthening our journey as a manufacturer to ‘FMCG of home textiles’ with increasing contribution from a set of trusted brands enabled by investments in innovation and technology and the success we are already seeing in our business-to-consumer (B2C) and direct-to-consumer (D2C) initiatives globally.