Home Retail Fabindia appoints Viney Singh as director and CEO

Fabindia appoints Viney Singh as director and CEO


India based ethnic wear brand Fabindia  has appointed Viney Singh as its director and CEO. He will be taking charge of his duties and responsibilities at Fabindia from August 1. He will succeed Subrata Datta who was the CEO since 2013.

Viney Singh, MD, Max Hypermarket India (Spar)
Singh who joined Max Hypermarkets in 2006 was responsible for building the SPAR brand in India

Viney Singh was previously the managing director of Max Hypermarkets India. Singh who joined Max Hypermarkets in 2006 was responsible for building the SPAR brand in India.

Prior to this, he was part of the start-up and leadership team as CEO of Reliance Communications, for their Karnataka and Kerala circles.

He has also worked in the food, personal care and home care businesses of Hindustan Unilever for several years.

Singh will succeed Subrata Datta who was Fabindia CEO since 2013.

An Indian Cultural Symbol

Fabindia, an ethnic wear chain based in India was established in 1960 by John Bissell, an American working for the Ford Foundation in Delhi. What started out as an export business for home furnishings swiftly changed tacks when Bissell realized the potential of domestic retail.

In 1976, Bissell opened the first Fabindia outlet in Delhi’s posh Greater Kailash area. The product appealed to the ethnic senses of Indians and the garments began selling like hot cakes. Before long, the one store had blossomed into branches and today there are over 170 Fabindia stores in India and abroad. His son, William Bissell, now manages the brand.

The store’s USP is that all products – be it furnishing material, clothes, or personal care products – are handmade by craftspeople across rural India, an effort by the brand to provide employment to scores of artisans and craftspeople in rural India (40,000 till date). Company personnel work closely with these artisans, providing various inputs including design, quality control, access to finance and raw materials.

Branching Out

After Fabindia had scaled heights that no other ethnic wear brand had in India, Bissell decided to experiment further, dabble in other products. He branched out into home products in October 2000, consisting of furniture, and other essentials like lighting, stationery, tableware, bed, bath, table and kitchen linen; floor coverings, upholstery fabric and curtains. .

In July 2004, Bissell entered the organic food segment with cereals, grains, pulses, spices, sugar, tea, coffee, honey, fruit preserves and herbs; and two years later, in March 2006, he launched a range of authentic personal care products – soaps, shampoos, hair oils, pure oils, moisturisers, body scrubs, face packs, hair conditioners and special skin care products to name a few.

With the appointment of Singh, the brand hopes to scale new heights.