Fastest Growing Companies 2018

Fashionably Forward

Riding on the growth in mens’ branded apparel, home-grown brand Indian Terrain has carved a niche for itself in the premium casual wear segment

RA Chandroo

Venkatesh Rajagopal joined the civil services as an IPS officer in 1979. After 10 years of service he finally couldn’t ignore his inner calling to be an entrepreneur. He resigned in 1988 to start his own export-manufacturing outfit called Celebrity Fashions. “Start-ups were nowhere in the picture those days but being an entrepreneur was definitely a thrill for me,” says the chairman and managing director of Indian Terrain. As an exporter, client visits often took Rajagopal overseas. “I could see the huge difference between products in international markets and domestic markets. There was a definite gap waiting to be filled, which I knew we could. Plus manufacturing for exports is an anonymous business. Once the product is on the ship, it is no longer yours. But I wanted to experience the complete product cycle for manufacturing to owning a brand and it was also becoming clear that consumption was going to take off in India. So we decided to launch Indian Terrain in 2000,” he says.