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Creative manufacturing is the backbone of the rural farm and off farm economy in India. However, a majority of the producers in the sector work outside of the formal framework, and are forced to take up employment in exploitative conditions. Producers struggle to gain access to broader markets and depend on infrequent and underpaid local orders, often placed by middlemen. Furthermore, as a result of the unorganised nature of business and lack of supply chain transparency, abuses like low wages, long hours, forced overtime, unsafe working conditions, short-term contracts, and harassment are systemic. Women, who comprise a majority of this workforce, are especially vulnerable, and sometimes earn less than half of what men do for the same work. With little access to professional management, producers operate using inefficient production practices, and often rely on middlemen for access to raw material, capital, and markets. This means lack of economic & social empowerment of producers.
Industree’s approach provides creative producers a choice to work in self-owned enterprises and become a part of formal, compliant and traceable value chains through means of a digital societal platform. Industree incubates and accelerates producer-owned enterprises to sustainability using its 6C model. This model takes into account the key components of a successful enterprise: Construct (infrastructure), Capacity (skills), Capital (access to working capital), Create (design), Channel (market linkage) and Connect (a digital presence). Industree plays the role of an incubator by facilitating the aggregation of producers into self-owned enterprises, skilling them, assisting them in developing products for modern markets, and enabling their access to vital working capital. It makes use of a professional management team to streamline operations of the enterprises, as well as a range of digital tools, including apps and a dedicated e-commerce portal to build a transparent value chain.