Anita Dongre, Fashion Designer, Founder of House of Anita Dongre

Anita Dongre, Fashion Designer, Founder of House of Anita Dongre

7 Dec 2023 | 2 min Read

Sudeshna Chakravarti

Author | 799 Articles

“My purpose has always been to create fashion that uplifts and empowers women, making them feel good about themselves.”

In Anita Dongre’s Sindhi family, traditional roles were assigned to the women, who were busy with the stereotypical responsibilities of wives and mothers. She would often watch her mother deeply immersed in stitching clothes for her and her siblings.

Growing up in Mumbai, she began observing women with thriving corporate careers or entrepreneurial pursuits. While their achievements served as a powerful source of inspiration, it also dawned on her that there was a conspicuous absence of an Indian brand dedicated to providing affordable and stylish workwear tailored to these dynamic women.

This marked a significant opportunity for Anita: she aspired to transform her passion for fashion into a clothing brand tailored specifically for the contemporary, working woman.

In an interview with SMB Story, Anita revealed, “I started my business in 1995 with only two sewing machines and a loan from my father. My sister and I worked from a 300-square-foot space, designing Western outfits for women.”

Despite facing rejection from fashion stores and retail establishments, and encountering resistance from mall owners who refused to provide space for her shop, the determined young entrepreneur remained undeterred. She went on to launch her brand–AND Designs—based in Mumbai, which eventually evolved into the House of Anita Dongre in 2015.

Today, her venture boasts a multi-dimensional portfolio featuring renowned brands like AND, Global Desi, Anita Dongre Bridal Couture, Anita Dongre Grassroot, and Anita Dongre Pink City. With a workforce exceeding 2,500 employees, the brand has established over 1,000 stores across 114 cities in India and globally, including prominent locations like New York.

This year, her brand’s revenue surged past ₹1,000 crore, a remarkable increase from ₹789 crore in 2019.

Anita Dongre stands as a trailblazer in introducing sustainable fashion to India. She has seamlessly integrated environmental consciousness into her business practices, consistently going the extra mile to diminish the carbon footprint of her brand. In recognition of her exceptional contributions to the fashion industry, she was also honoured with the ‘Outstanding Entrepreneur Prize’ by Tiecon.

Image credit: ET Retail



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