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Table of Contents
1. Introduction ................................................................................................... 2
2. Literature Review ........................................................................................... 3
2.1. Company Background ........................................................................................................................ 3
2.2. Logo of Aarong ...................................................................................................................................... 4
2.3. Aarongs Mission Statement ............................................................................................................ 4
2.4. Vision of Aarong ................................................................................................................................... 5
2.5. Organizational Structure of Aarong ............................................................................................. 5
2.6. Goals towards employment at Aarong ........................................................................................ 6
2.7. Services provided to the employees of Aarong ....................................................................... 6
3. How Aarong was formed ................................................................................ 6
3.1. Ayesha Abedin Foundation-AAF- (Aarongs Production Centre) .................................... 6
3.2. How Aarongs Shareholders are benefitted .............................................................................. 7
3.3. Social Compliance & Producers Relations ................................................................................. 7
3.4. Organogram for SCPR ......................................................................................................................... 8
3.4.1. Senior Officer, Monitoring ............................................................................................................... 8
3.4.2. Management Trainee Officer ......................................................................................................... 9
3.4.3. Junior Officer, Monitoring ............................................................................................................... 9
4. Products & Services of Aarong ........................................................................ 9
4.1. Clothing & Accessories .................................................................................................................... 10
4.1.1. Mens garments: ................................................................................................................................. 10
4.1.2. Women/Ladies Garments .............................................................................................................. 10
4.1.3. Childrens Garments ......................................................................................................................... 11
4.2. Nakshi Katha ....................................................................................................................................... 11
4.3. Home Textiles/Home Accessories ............................................................................................. 12
4.4. Jewelry items ...................................................................................................................................... 12
4.5. Metal/Brass ......................................................................................................................................... 12
4.6. Leather................................................................................................................................................... 12
4.7. Bamboo/Cane/Leaf .......................................................................................................................... 13
4.8. Food Items ........................................................................................................................................... 13
5. Industry Analysis .......................................................................................... 13
5.1. Major Competitors ............................................................................................................................ 13
5.2. Aarongs Retail Outlets ................................................................................................................... 14
5.3. SWOT Analysis of Aarong .............................................................................................................. 14
5.3.1. Strengths ............................................................................................................................................... 14
5.3.2. Weaknesses .......................................................................................................................................... 14
5.3.3. Opportunities ...................................................................................................................................... 15
5.3.4. Threats ................................................................................................................................................... 15
5.4. Explanation of the SWOT analysis of Aarong ........................................................................ 15
5.4.1. Strengths ............................................................................................................................................... 15
5.4.2. Weaknesses .......................................................................................................................................... 16
5.4.3. Opportunities ...................................................................................................................................... 16
5.4.4. Threats ................................................................................................................................................... 17
6. Conclusion ................................................................................................... 17
7. Bibliography ................................................................................................. 18




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1. Introduction
To provide a stable and gainful source of employment for the under privileged
rural artisans, lift up the traditional identity and the commitment of quality service
On the basis of these principal Aarong started its journey in Bangladesh. Aarong is an
organization that is dedicated to change the lives of disadvantages, promoting
traditional products from Bangladesh and opening the doors so their products can be
exported. Throughout Bangladesh and in international destinations, the name of
Aarong is the synonym of quality originality and uniqueness. The designer and the
creators of the product range offered by Aarong, have not only established the
organization as leaders in deshi handicraft, but have also reignited interest and
popularity for styles and traditional crafts that are native to the country. It is the
gracious blend of contemporary and customary that ensures that each product is
original and saleable in modern society. Aarong therefore has thousands of artisans
producing pottery work, jewelry, woven baskets, silk, leather items, brass pieces and
magnificent wood cravings. Today, few urban consumers will argue that Aarong is
the local Mecca for deshi handicraft. Aarongs product designs has brought consumer
attention back to the products and styles that are indigenous to Bangladesh, its
designers blending the traditional with the contemporary in a manner that has won
instant consumer appeal, starting a revolution in trends that has now been taken up by
countless other boutiques and stores. Aarongs product designs focus on the diverse
types and textures of crafts and patterns that have been passed along from generation
to generation among weavers and artisans in craft hubs around the country.
The name of the organization Aarong is a Bangla word. It means a village fair or
market. The village fair provides craftsmen of all trades a marketplace to display and
sell their traditional handicrafts. The naming of Aarong as such upholds the
organizations commitment to promote the indigenous goods of our country, which are
a part of our rich cultural and artistic heritage.
It is the handicraft-marketing arm of BRAC (Bangladesh Rural Advancement
committee), the largest NGO in Bangladesh. Aarong has created a village fair for the
craftsmen of all trades come together to exhibit and sale their traditional handicrafts.it



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helps vitalize the traditional craftsmanship and find a wider market for their products
nationally and internationally.
Established in 1978, Aarong is a fair trade organization dedicated to bring about
positive changes in the lives of disadvantaged artisans and underprivileged rural
women by reviving and promoting their skills and craft. Reaching out to weavers,
potters, brass workers, jewelers, jute workers, basket weavers, wood carvers, leather
workers and more, Aarong embraces and nurtures a diverse representation of 65,000
artisans, 85% of whom are women. Today, Aarong has become the foundation upon
which independent cooperative groups and family-based artisans market their craft, in
an effort to position the nations handicraft industry on a world platform of
appreciation and acknowledgement. Over the years, Aarong has earned a name as one
of the finest rural craft producers and marketer in home and abroad.
2. Literature Review
2.1. Company Background
Aarong began as a cause a means to an end for a quiet organization fighting to
uphold the dignity of the marginalized. In 1976, when BRAC- a Bangladeshi NGO
dedicated to alleviating poverty and empowering the poor, first began encouraging
sericulture for women in Manikganj, their only buyers were a few scattered retailers
in Dhaka. Weeks, even months would pass between supply and payment, until BRAC
intervened. Aarong was born out of a need to ensure that the penniless silk farmers of
Manikganj were paid for their goods upon delivery, so that they could feed their
families.
Today, Aarong's reach has spread beyond Manikganj to the rest of the country. It has
grown into a thriving international enterprise showcasing ethnic wear to beautiful
crafts from silks, handloom cotton, endi to terracotta, bamboo, jute and much more.
From a single shop, Aarong has grown into one of Bangladesh's biggest retail chains,
with eight stores spread across the major metropolitan areas of the country - in Dhaka,
Chittagong, Khulna and Sylhet and one in London, UK.
Aarong symbolizes fairness in the global village. The organization has identified three
basic constraints for gainful employment of the low income and marginalized people



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in the rural areas: lack of working capital, marketing support and opportunity for
skills development. In order to bridge these gaps, Aarong provides a wide range of
services to its workers and suppliers:
Spot payment on product delivery to encourage efficiency and productivity
Reach out to producers in remote areas to ensure fair value for their efforts
Marketing communication and information for artisans
Advances against purchase orders where necessary
Training & Education in skills development to raise product quality and
marketability
Product Design and Support in Product Development
Quality Control to increase producer awareness of the importance of quality
These values reflect fair trade principles, which have been developed by registered
Fair Trade Organizations. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better
trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers
in Bangladesh.
2.2. Logo of Aarong
The logo of Aarong is an image of peacock.it is
spectacularly beautiful because of the brilliant,
iridescent, diversified colorful pattern in its tail. The
color of the peacock in the logo is orange because it
represents energy. By this logo Aarong communicates
that its products are as stunning and as unique as a
peacock. Moreover it wants to emphasize its natural, eco-friendly products through
the emblem.
2.3. Aarongs Mission Statement
To make Aarong the best in the world in providing a unique Bangladeshi lifestyle
experience to empower people and promote Bangladesh while protecting our



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environment.
2.4. Vision of Aarong
Aarong has a vision to establish them as worlds one of the famous fair trade fashion
house, and to remain market leader throughout its business. Aarong expanded its
business in international arena. Aarong has a dream to develop more artisans of
Bangladesh and make them self- dependent and attract more and more international
customers towards Bangladeshi culture.
2.5. Organizational Structure of Aarong




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2.6. Goals towards employment at Aarong
Empowering destitute rural women by providing opportunities for
employment and income generation.
Ensuring commercial success of the enterprise of women producers.
Reviving traditional skills of rural artisans.
2.7. Services provided to the employees of
Aarong
Free Medical check-up including free eye treatment, eye-glasses and treatment
costs for severe illnesses
Advance wage payments for employees in need
Day care services
Workers retirement fund
Twenty five thousand independent cooperative groups and traditional family-based
artisans also market their crafts through Aarong. Potters, Brass Workers, Jewelers,
Jute workers, Basket Weavers, Handloom Weavers, Silk Weavers, Wood Carvers,
Leather workers and various artisans with specialized skills from all over the country
come to Aarong for marketing and support services.
3. How Aarong was formed
3.1. Ayesha Abedin Foundation-AAF- (Aarongs
Production Centre)
The Ayesha Abed Foundation (AAF) is an organization that aims to provide avenues
for employment and income generation for underprivileged rural women. It is an
enclave for women, formed to uplift them economically, through their work as
producers, and also socially, through their development into entrepreneurs. The
Foundation provides an appropriate working environment, financial and technical
assistance, and training to develop the womens skills in various crafts. The
Foundation was established to commemorate the memory and work of late Mrs.
Ayesha Abed, a co-worker and wife of the Founder and Chairperson of BRAC. The
work that is done in the Foundation is a testament to her commitment to the issues of
education, training and employment opportunities for disadvantaged women. It was
she who in 1976 initiated all the present major activities of AAF in Manikgonj.



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The AAF aims to work with the most underprivileged women in the society. These
women are often the most neglected and are in need of much assistance and support.
The AAF plays the role of a facilitator. To support these women Aarong has created
13 production centers in Baniachong, Gorpara, Jamalpur, Jessore, Kushtia,
Manikganj, Rajbari, Sherpur, and Pabna, Pollobi, Kurigram, Nilphamary, Jhenaidah
and 653 sub Centre spread across in 2000 villages of Bangladesh. Today More than
40000 women work directly for Aarong in its production centers. The women are
placed in an enabling environment, with other women of similar socio-economic
backgrounds. They are trained and then given the opportunity to generate income.
One of the major challenges that these women have to face is that they are
marginalized and they, on their own, have no way of becoming part of the economic
system. This is where the AAF steps in, helping such marginalized women out of
their peripheral existence in society, and giving them the opportunity to become
involved in sustainable enterprise.
The AAF is closely interrelated with other programs, especially BRAC Development
Program (BDP) and Aarong. The women workers of the AAF come from the BDP
organized Village Organizations. Working at the AAF thus gives the women access to
other BRAC programs. All of the AAFs finished products are sold through Aarong,
which additionally provides designs, raw materials and financial support to the AAF.
Since AAF supplies exclusively to Aarong, it is treated as Aarong Production Centres.
3.2. How Aarongs Shareholders are benefitted
100% increase in revenue generated for
Profit percentage will increase by 4% as compared to 2010 by cost control
Brac to showcase Aarong as a model of successful social enterprise that
maximizes benefit for all stakeholders.
3.3. Social Compliance & Producers Relations
From a customer focus, the main idea of having a social compliance department is to
ensure that our Customers can shop at Aarong with a clean conscience. The
department is to ensure that the production centers where manufacturing takes place
are operating in standards that are acceptable to society without exploitation taking
place. The working environment, terms and conditions, wage levels, worker benefits,



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health and safety facilities, working hours and worker development are all
standardized and implemented by our Producers.
Producer Relations is a very important function to the organization and gives the
Producers a place to express their views and grievances of how to improve the
working relationship between Aarong and its Producers. Complaints and grievances
are filed to this department directly by the Producers which are then taken up with the
necessary departments at Aarong for resolution. Similarly, SCPR department for fact
finding and then coming to a resolution with the relevant people involved also looks
at a complaint or investigation raised about a Producer.
3.4. Organogram for SCPR







3.4.1. Senior Officer, Monitoring
Responsible for implementing social compliance in the field level at both AAF
and Individual Producer.
Address issues / complaints and recommend solution for the problems from
the producers.
Work closely with AAF Monitoring Officer to implement solutions and
monitor progress made.
Work closely with Junior Officer to implement solutions and monitor progress
made by individual producers.
Responsible for implementing social compliance at Aarong Head Office.
Proactively contribute to the current development process, compliance



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monitoring procedure and other compliance operational practices.
Ensure that identified key issue in relation to the monitoring is reported to the
management.
Facilitate to undertake social audits for producers.
3.4.2. Management Trainee Officer
Support Senior Manager to making policies.
Prepare Monthly Reporting on department progress and activities.
Research on best practices for Aarong.
Full time support to achieve accreditations such as SA 8000 and ISO.
Prepare Social Audit documents for producers.
Help Senior Manager to accomplish day-to-day activity.
Initial grievance handling for individual producers.
3.4.3. Junior Officer, Monitoring
Assist Senior Officer, Monitoring with implementing and monitoring social
compliance for individual producers.
Assist Senior Officer, Monitoring with implementing and monitoring social
compliance for AAF.
Establish and maintain a strong relationship with AAF and individual
producer.
Provide guidance and advice to producers when required to his selected
business area on compliance related issue after discussion with Senior
Officer.
Facilitate to undertake social audits for producers.
Follow up on non-conformances identified in audits.
4. Products & Services of Aarong
Holding the steadfast to its original Mission, Aarong today supports the lives and
livelihoods of thousands of rural artisans and handicraft producers. These producers
and artisans create wide range of products for the different types of consumers in
home and abroad. The products are unique and traditional and appealing to the
modern consumers, staring from clothes, accessories to home wares. Aarong designs
and creates clothes for women, men and children. There are designers and more than



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3000 weavers across the country are involved with the production of Aarong clothing
lines. And for the fashionable accessories there is one special department called
jewelry department where jeweler creates elegant jewelries that are contemporary yet
traditional using gold, silver and jewels like pearl, emerald and diamonds. The other
accessories like bag, sandals and produced in AAF centres using leather, jute, bamboo
etc. In home ware and decorative Aarong produces pottery vases and sculpture of
wood, bamboo, brass and clay etc.
For exporting the products Aarong has a separate department in head office and very
selectives artisans work here to produce fine quality products and these are sent to the
production centres as sample of the exporting products. Here is the list of products
Aarong produces:
4.1. Clothing & Accessories
4.1.1. Mens garments:
Punjabi
Shirts
Short kurtas
Lungi
Shawls
Sleeping suit
4.1.2. Women/Ladies Garments



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Sharee
Shalwar Kameez
Tops, pants
Dopatta
Skirts
3 pieces
Fabrics
Scarves
Shawls
Nightwear

4.1.3. Childrens Garments
Girls: Pant tops, Skirts, Lehenga sets.
Boys: Pant shirts, Fatua, Panjabee- pajama
Newborn Baby: Nima, panty, Dry paper, Baby sets.
4.2. Nakshi Katha
The word Kantha originally suggests a light quilt of mild winter and cool monsoon
nights. Through the concepts exist in almost all parts of the world, the form of
quilting thats prevails in Bengal is unique and not only serves as functional article
but also represents the cultural identity and folk arts of this land. The colorful patterns
and designs hat are embroidered on these articles results in the name Nakshi
Kantha. Each of this kantha represents the contents of a womans mind and fields
with romance, sentiment and philosophy. Cushion covers, Bed covers, tapestry,



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jewelry boxes, ladies parts etc.
4.3. Home Textiles/Home Accessories
Aarong is the name of differentiation. Its cloth lines are different in design from any
other shops of the country. More than 3000
weavers across the country are involved
with the production of Aarong clothing
lines. Each and every dress has its own
significance as the talented craftsmen who
are contributing make them to the locally
manufactured handloom fabric. Every
clothing line is exclusive with a variety of
shade, textures drawing, and trimmings.
Aarong paper products consists stationary,
card books, wrapping papers that have their
own significance.
4.4. Jewelry items
Aarong is selling silver, Gold, pearl, Beads, Clay &
Jute Jewelry. Gold Jewelry of Aarong is guaranteed
to be 21 karat. Aarong is the foirst silver jewelry
selling outlets in Bangladesh.
4.5. Metal/Brass
The metal products are also available for exclusive home decoration and used Candle
stands, Photo frames, Lamps, CD racks Napkins Holder, Flower Vases, Ashtrays,
Wall mirror, showpieces & Decorative Wall hanging re the metal and brass items.
4.6. Leather
Aarong offers the finest quality of leather produced
in Bangladesh. It is to be noted that everything is
hand done by the artisans. Aarongs leather product
includes all kinds of desk, home, gift and personal
accessories. The leather is made by small leather
workshop situated in and around Dhaka10 to 15



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worker and some trainees are employed. Sheep and calf leather is generally used,
sheep leather can be embossed, embroidered, printed and hand printed. Calf leather is
stronger and harder than that of sheep. However, it can only be screen-printed. Some
products like Ladies sandal, ladies bag, Gents sandals, Jewelry box, Belts, Wallet,
Key rings, Optical cases, jackets, executive bags, Folder/ Files.
4.7. Bamboo/Cane/Leaf
Cane and bamboo abundantly found raw gave rise to traditional industry who are
using this as raw materials. Traditional items include furniture. Aarong makes oother
products for day-to-day use decorations, gifts etc.
4.8. Food Items
Aarong Dairy Milk
(Chocolates, Strawberry
and Tamarind)
Aarong Yoghurt (Sweet
and Sour Flavors)

5. Industry Analysis
5.1. Major Competitors
There are many major competitors based on the product category that Aarong
produces and one of the
major competitor is Deshi
Dosh, which started with a
very attractive name it is a
combined effort of 10 local
companies to promote the
culture and clothes of
Bangladesh and the stores are
Deshal, Nipun, Rang,
Banglar Mela, Bibiana,
Shadakalo, Anjans,



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Probortona, Nagardola and Kay Kraft altogether are this Deshi Dosh. Maintaining a
harmony with others each stall remains unique. All of them displays their own
product. The first site of these exclusive deshi products was at the Bashundhara City
Mall, and then it opened the second site at Hotel Ruposhi Bangla. People who are in
to our countries own products should visit Deshi Dosh. This is a perfect zone to shop
for male and female of all ages.
5.2. Aarongs Retail Outlets
Aarong sales its products through its own outlets, Aarong follow zero distribution
channel. Around the country Aarong has ten outlets six outlets in Dhaka in six major
parts (Dhanmondi, Gulshan, Uttara, Maghbazar, Wari, Mirpur, Jamuna Future Park)
and outside Dhaka Aarong has two outlets in Chittagong, one in Sylhet and one in
Khulna. And outside Bangladesh Aarong has one shop in London, United Kingdom
and another in Jackson Heights, New York.
5.3. SWOT Analysis of Aarong
SWOT analysis is a powerful technique for understanding organizations strength and
weakness and looking for the opportunities and threats it may face. Used in a business
context it helps organization crave a sustainable niche in a market. This analysis is
mainly based on a current market situation.
5.3.1. Strengths

Specialist marketing expertise.
Leading brand reputation.
Customer loyalty towards the brand.
Good Production quality.
Increased sales
Strong Management.
Innovative idea.
Low production damage rate.
Unique handicrafts.

5.3.2. Weaknesses




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Poor access to collection.
Vulnerable to producer.
Financial support.
No direct market experience.
Limited budget in R&D (Research & Development).
Higher price.
Sales person needs more training.

5.3.3. Opportunities

New distribution channel.
Capture more market share.
Local events.
New market segment.
Seasonal fashion influence.
Cost advantages.
Can be surprise competitors.

5.3.4. Threats
More competitors.
Price wars with competitors.
Competitors have some superior products.
Changing technology.
Political instability.
Economy
5.4. Explanation of the SWOT analysis of Aarong
5.4.1. Strengths
Aarong & AAF is the pioneer organization in handicraft. Aarong has more than 68 %
market share, which makes it the market leader. And over these years Aarong has
built a strong brand name in home and abroad. The products quality maintains a
certain standard and it secured Aarong with loyal customers. Aarongs one of the
biggest strength is its Production Centers (AAF). The sales of Aarong are so high that



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it has almost zero production damage rate, which reduces producing costs. They are
innovative and always bring some new product in the market, which meets customer
requirement and expectations. The organization is a respected employer that values its
workforce.
5.4.2. Weaknesses
Even though Aarong is the market leader it still has its drawbacks, one of the
weakness is Aarong charges higher price for their products on the other hand the
competitors charges lower price for the products. It not only reduces Aarongs sales in
off seasons, but also similarity in design as boutiques are coming up with similar
designs. Aarong has its outlets in Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Khulna, but they do
not have any outlets in Rajshahi, Rangpur, and Jessore etc.
Aarong has a reputation for new product development and creativity. However they
remain vulnerable to the possibility that their producer may not be able to produce
goods on timely manner due to their inability of high scale production. The collection
channel of the organization is not well structured which leads them to uncertainty
collection of products from the producer in time, creating hindrances for them in the
upcoming market. Since most of the products at Aarong are handmade, personal
calamities also effects drastically on production, which disables the company to
deliver their product on time to the consumers. This stands one of the biggest
disadvantages for Aarong as these occurs on most instances on the time of delivery
Aarong charges relatively high prices for their products than their competitors.
Resulting in a loss of consumers whose financial level fluctuates from time to time.
Sometimes their unprofessional attitude leads customers to satisfaction and switch to
other local brands.
5.4.3. Opportunities
Aarong proved to have an excellent aptitude at capturing the advantage of
opportunities. They have opportunities to involve them in new distribution channels
joint venture with some other small Boutique and more sales point. Aarong also has
the adequacy to globalize its business ventures. Handmade products are now the latest
trend in the local fashion industry. Local events and functions like Pahela Baishakh,
Pahela Falgun, Victory Day, Independence Day etc. creates a huge demand for
handicraft and with proper marketing skills Aarong can launch new products



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especially for these occasions. Alongside the season change, changes of peoples
preferences also occur. So does necessity, based on this idea Aarong can attract the
local consumers at all season.

Aarong can go for new outlets in different cities. They can also start joint venture
with other boutiques so that they can have more coverage in home and abroad.
Aarong has no seasonal collection; they can start seasonal collection for each season it
will give them opportunity to attract new markets.
5.4.4. Threats
Though it stands as one of the oldest organization in Bangladesh handicraft industry,
even though Aarong does not have any big competitors now but the number of
completion is ever growing. There is always new competitors threat. And the number
of consumer for other boutiques is increasing which will eventually decrease
Aarongs market and as well as sales. Existence of some small competitors like Kay
Kraft, Anjons, Deshal, Jattra, Khubsurat, O2, Rang etc. are there alongside other
small boutiques. Price along with rising of new advertising are increasing the
popularity of the smaller brands, decreasing Aarongs market share as well as sales.
However, repositioning of the brand as a major weapon, Aarong is ready to battle.
Uncertain economic conditions and decrease in the dollar rate can considerably affect
the company progress. Customer need and taste in handicraft is reducing and
gradually being replaced by technology based synthetic and plastic products.
Moreover cultural diversity is increasing the interference of foreign culture, thus
demand of foreign handicraft will deteriorate.
6. Conclusion
Aarong is not only a fashion house it is more than that. With times Aarong has
evolved itself as one of the most successful lifestyle store in our country maintaining
the tradition and the trends. Besides becoming the leading lifestyle chain store in
Bangladesh they have cherished the traditional crafts of Bangladesh through Ayesha
Abed Foundation and have been able to create employment of thousands of people.
As a result Aarong is a fair trade organization reaching global market by representing
folklore tradition of Bangladesh. Aarong & AAF plays the role of protector and



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promoter of traditional Bangladeshi products and designs. the designers and the
innovators of the products offered by Aarong have not only established the
organization of as leaders in handicrafts but have also reignited interest and popularity
for styles and traditional crafts that are native to the country. It is this gracious blend
of contemporary and customary that ensures that each product is original and saleable
in a modern society.

7. Bibliography
http://www.aarong.com
https://www.facebook.com/BRAC.AARONG
http://www.banglarfashion.com/BrandAllProduct.aspx?param=BHg%2FZIuT
obUGga7ORl6PoQ%3D%3D
http://www.brac.net/content/aarong#.U0aQXtxHA2w
http://www.upohar2me.com/send_gift_bangladesh?bid=210
http://www.aarong.com/aaf.php