The incredible IITian empowering exporters at Tirupur

Man is the roof and crown of creation. Gradation among the human beings is created by differences in the ‘quality and texture’ of their emotions and intellectual convictions. Sanjay Gupta, one of IIT Delhi’s brightest students, did create that difference. A graduate in 1983, Sanjay Gupta left the abode of opulence which was brought in by several job offers, many of them from multinationals and rather decided to follow his heart over his head. Ignoring the offers, he shifted his bag and baggage to Tirupur, a small town in Tamil Nadu near the Nilgiris.
Gupta’s move seemed a disaster as in those days not many outside the state knew of Tirupur’s existence. (It’s rise to fame as a textile export hub happened later). But he was unfazed. It was always his ambition to do something on his own. Besides, being the only son, he felt he had to help his father in the family business. In 1982, his father had bagged a Rs 32-lakh contract from Europe and shifted to Tirupur.
“We always knew that Sanjay would be on his own and not join a company, ” says Sanjay Sangal, who studied at IIT with Gupta and is now running his own software consulting firm Microware in Delhi.
While the first few years were primarily spent on understanding the business of textiles, Gupta gradually learnt that Tirupur exporters, including his own family business, were unable to compete with global rivals because of inefficient processes and lack of automation. “One couldn’t have asked for a better internship as the first 10 years helped me understand the business, realize the inefficiencies and also gain trust of local exporters, ” recalls Gupta.
Gupta brought several exporters in Tirupur together to form their own IT Company called G-Tech Info Solutions. The company was formed after Gupta. Many others realized that they needed their own firm to oversee procurement and deployment of new IT solutions. “The real benefit of technology lies in its application, and not in the hype, ” says Gupta succinctly.
“We now plan to have a centralized ERP that can be delivered to exporters for monthly fee of Rs. 3-4, 000 without having to invest upfront, ” he says. These exporters are hoping that this proposed enterprise resource planning software will help them track export consignments in real-time, through computers and even mobile phones, helping them erase almost Rs 800 crore in losses each year because of delayed shipments, apart from saving another
Rs 200-300 crore from supply chain efficiencies.
Today, he has no regrets about what he is doing. “It’s a tricky issue and we have had discussions around this recently, but we must give back what Tirupur has given to us, ” says Amita Gupta, his wife who manages the family business and helps him find enough time to fulfill his mission.

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