Companies

Finnish workwear firm to sew up Indian talent

Murali Gopalan Mumbai | Updated on November 30, 2017 Published on February 19, 2014

Lindstrom is tapping intellectual capital in India for global leadership positions



For Juha Laurio, his company’s growth plans for India are only one part of the story. The other lies in tapping the country’s intellectual capital.

The President and CEO of Lindstrom, which specialises in supplying work-wear to companies, is upbeat about its next round of expansion.

The move will see the company setting up service centres in Assam and Gujarat, taking its total to nine. The other units are located in Delhi, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Punjab.

“This expansion is part of our efforts to cover all regions. It will bring Lindstrom close to its customer base, which includes industries such as electronics, engineering, automotive and pharmaceuticals,” Laurio told Business Line over the telephone from the company’s corporate headquarters in Helsinki, Finland.

Uniform appeal

The 166-year-old Finnish company, which has been in India since 2007, designs, supplies and delivers cleaned garments to its customers for a rental fee.

Mending, washing and maintenance of the uniforms is done by the Lindstrom’s service centres. The customer uses one set while the company maintains the other.

According to Laurio, there are many reasons for customers based in India to opt for Lindstrom uniforms, especially with the increased focus on hygiene and safety. It is only natural that companies with global ambitions will also come in for closer audit scrutiny (pharmaceuticals is a case in point), which makes parameters such as hygiene/safety in worker uniforms particularly important.

Yet, it is the human capital in India that excites the CEO of Lindstrom as this can be leveraged across its operations globally. The company is now undertaking campus recruitments from B-schools in India. The candidates will form part of its management training programmes in Finland and parts of Europe.

Human capital

“This is the first part of a journey, to identify future global managers and directors with roots in India. You just need to look at the recent cases of Indians who are heading top MNCs,” Laurio says.

The country, he says, offers skilled, intelligent and young people who are “eager and hungry to learn” and have “a burning ambition” to succeed. This opens tremendous opportunities, with Indians playing a big role in Lindstrom’s global ambitions.

Published on February 19, 2014
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