Sport Print : Father-Daughter’s sporting success in Printing Industry
Bhivandi based Sport Print has recently invested in Walz automatic textile screen printing machine (8 col /12 head configuration) manufactured by Heinz Walz GmbH, Germany and Marketed by Trieka Innovations (P) Ltd. and supported by Pranit Colour Concept, Mumbai. “After a thorough evaluation among many other brands, we decided to buy a machine made in Germany. I feel German brand guarantees surety of quality and performance, coupled with reliable service by their supplier from India who are in our regular contact. Moreover, the machine is compact and easy to use, and of course we got competitive price as well.”
About 30 years ago, taking inspiration from his father, Harish Bhagat started a T-Shirt printing unit in Mumbai. Although the company still operates its 500 sq.ft facility at Mahim, Mumbai, they have set up a new 3000 sq.ft production unit at Bhumi World Industrial Park at Bhiwandi. “My dad used to work as a printing supervisor in a couple of textile mills,” says the veteran.
And taking inspiration from him, his daughter Mrunal too has joined his textile printing business. She takes care of production and other works. It is thus laudable that being a daughter (Beti bachao, Beti padao), after studying fashion designing, she decided to join her father’s business as there was no other professionally qualified successor for his business. “I joined my father’s business 3-4 years ago, after completing Diploma in Fashion Technology, from L. S. Raheja School of Art, Mumbai. Joining my father’s textile printing business is my own choice. After my study I worked as a Fashion Journalist with Loksatta, a leading Marathi daily in Mumbai. I used to write and still write on Fashion trends. Initially I had the idea of starting my own business related to fashion. But I thought it prudent to join my father’s ready to take forward textile printing business.”
Sport Print undertakes textile printing on jobwork basis for corpoarates, brands, online market, besides their regular portfolio of sports wear printing for various sports leagues, schools and college sports. The company also undertakes Personalised T-shirt manufacturing for corporates, etc.
“Sports wear accounts for 30-40 percent of our total garment printing jobs. We have been undertaking printing of IPL jersey from the very first match,” says Harish Bhagat, adding, “Due to online culture, we are now catering to e-commerce in a big way. And to meet their production requirement we invested in an automatic t shirt printing six months ago. Online T-shirt market opened a new avenue for us. Today we provide Printing service to few of the leading online portals in India. Our clients, dealing in official merchandises such as Marvel, WWE, IPL, Harry Potter, Cartoon Network, Disney etc, emphasize on very fine and good printing quality.”
Sport Print has diverse garment decoration facilities such as Screen printing (manual carousal and automatic printing machine), Epson DTG, heat transfer (vinyl print-cut and apply). With the experience of catering to some of the International and National brands, Sport Print has achieved mastery over DTG printing as well. “Today along with screen printing, people also demand for DTG printing. DTG is ideal to print fine quality, multiple colored images,” says Bhagat, adding, “Most of the International brands are opting for this printing service.”
The veteran garment printer emphasizes on quality. “It all comes from your attitude. It is up to you, for e.g. dust is rampant in garment printing sector, but wherever possible efforts should be made to protect the production floor. And on our part, we have an Air-conditioned production unit.”
Online Market has influenced T-shirt culture and its growth says Mrunal. “The future of T-shirt printing Business is bright if one continuously keeps maintaining printing quality, creativity and adapt changes according to market trends,” she adds.
Revealing their new business strategy, Mrunal says: “We also work with upcoming artists and designers who are exploring online platforms for good quality T-shirt selling. We do work with some of them to bring their imagination on t-shirt. At the very beginning of their business when less quantity of production becomes a hindrance for them, printing techniques such as DTG provides them big relief.”
She adds: “In future, we are planning to work with more and more designers. New generation brings new ideas on table which helps in experimenting new printing techniques. After all, constant experiment is the key to activeness in this industry. May be we incorporate ideas like loyalty program which help them to enter into commercial market with due credit to their names. We also provide ‘make by demand’ printing services to offline customers. People who have demand for limited t-shirts, even they can print their stuff as per their requirement. So, from a single t-shirt to some thousand t-shirts, we are fully equipped to fulfill customers’ demand.”