Building Brand India through it’s Cultural Economy
India is the seventh-largest exporter of cultural and creative goods across the world. 90% of the world’s handwoven textiles come from India, but not a single Indian fashion brand has wielded eminence across geographies. The global Yoga market is estimated to be USD 80 billion and India’s share is less than 5%. The global Ayurveda market was valued at US $4.75 billion in 2017 but India’s share was a meager US $402 million. This is repeated across sectors from tourism to arts and crafts to food to many others.
Clearly, Indian cultural heritage lacks economic heft on the world stage in spite of having enormous, diverse, and storied cultural assets.
The Challenge Areas
There have been enormous efforts over the decades by multiple individuals, groups, governments, and others to harness our cultural assets into enterprises that not only provide economic value but also livelihoods. These efforts have largely focused on the supply side, such as working with artisans and weaver groups and providing them with much-needed training, design, manufacturing, and other inputs.
However, it is equally critical to address the demand side of the business, which includes, an understanding of trends, markets and customers, product design sensibilities, technology, global supply chain, quality standards, branding, partnerships, and legal issues. It is this jugalbandi of the demand and supply sides that will create successful cultural businesses, with cultural entrepreneurs being central players, assisted by funders, mentors, and experts.
Changing demographics have modified the aspirations and needs of new consumers around the world. They now seek authentic, sustainable, holistic products, services and experiences. This rise in an assertive, confident, aware class of talented Indians alongside a rise in buying power and changing tastes, is what augurs well for the success of Indian cultural brands created by cultural entrepreneurs.
By enabling an ecosystem that catalyzes cultural entrepreneurship in India through market-side interventions, partners, funding, policy advocacy, and research, the Network of Indian Cultural Enterprises aims to create and nurture valuable and profitable Indian cultural brands across the globe, and in turn, shape Brand India.
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