Sunday, July 20, 2008

Classic Stripes: Taking Auto Styling to the next Level.

GRAPHICS and decorations on vehicles was once a business pursued by the small-time garage operator catering to a local clientele. Even abroad, there were only a few companies in this business, and in India, virtually none. Two decades ago, not many would have seen sense in the need for an organised business to put stripes and designs on automobiles. But Kishore Musale has not only taken that business mainstream, he has also made a number of car and bike manufactures factor in exterior adornment as part of their design.

So, it was a milestone for Classic Stripes, which Mr Musale founded in a 120-sq-ft room outside Mumbai in 1987, to have won an order from Tata Motors to provide body-side graphics to the Rs 1 lakh car. The company already serves a range of Tata vehicles in addition to global giants like Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Toyota and Indian companies, including Bajaj and Mahindra & Mahindra.

CLASSIC STRIPES PVT. LTD. (CSPL) was established in 1987. The Company is in the business of producing decals which are used in the 2-wheeler and 4-wheeler industry. With ISO-9001 certification and a staff strength of over 300 people, CSPL has propelled its brand to the forefront of Graphic and Printing Industry. The Company has a production capacity to produce over 6 million motorbike decals per annum and is the largest manufacturer of 2-wheeler Graphic worldwide. The Company also produces Doming Labels and has a production capacity to produce over 2,00,000 Doming Labels per Shift. The Company has also invested in the state-of-the-art in-house design studio which caters to the requirement of the industry and as per customer’s design requirement.

Classic Stripes Pvt. Ltd. for the second consecutive year has featured in the survey conducted by the Grow Talent Company in partnership with Economic Times as the “Great Places to Work” we were rated 5th in 2007. . This is a tribute to our Core Competence which is our “People”.

Mr Musale’s business goals are ambitious and global. While selling to the local market and retail buyers would have been easier, Mr Musale, from the beginning, wanted to have original equipment manufacturers as his clients. He particularly wanted to target Japanese vehicle makers, which had the best volumes to offer, but insisted on the highest quality possible.

Classic Stripes had to struggle for business for four years after its birth. In the first year, it made only 20,000 units. But Mr Musale believed the automobile industry in India was set to explode and his time would come. He was amply rewarded when the country’s economic growth, technology advances and a growing population began to translate into a rapid growth initially for two-wheelers and later for cars.

With experience serving tough Japanese clients, Classic was quite ready to meet the new domestic demand. There has been no looking back since and today, the company has developed the capacity to produce 10 million units of graphics a year. It employs 600 people and has been ranked among the 25 best places to work in the country by Businessworld magazine.

“OEMs have always been our main focus. But, now we are concentrating on after-market graphics for cars, graphics with original designs through their showroom,” says Mr Musale. Mr Musale can now afford to take more time off to spend with family or to listen to Led Zeppelin’s songs. But he is already chalking out global expansion plans for Classic and two sister companies. “We are also looking at supplying signages like the big ones you see at petrol stations, shopping malls in India and abroad,” he says.

Article Resources:
The Economic Times.
Classic Stripes

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