Suuchi Inc., a two-year-old New Jersey vertical apparel manufacturer, has secured a $37.7 million Grow New Jersey grant to expand its operations and hire for up to 400 advanced manufacturing jobs.
Currently located in a smaller 10,000-square foot facility in North Bergen, N.J., Suuchi will now move to a 113,110-square-foot facility in nearby Kearny. The factory at Kearny Point is a few miles from the Garment Center in Manhattan, which is important to founder and CEO Suuchi Ramesh.
“We’re finalizing the lease terms right now,” Ramesh told Sourcing Journal in a phone interview. “The tax credit award incentivizes us to continue to grow. We’ve also been spending a lot of money on new technologies because that’s really the answer to bringing manufacturing back to the United States and to build a suite of products that support the growth.”
Ramesh developed a four-point strategy for Suuchi Inc. based on her belief that a rigid supply chain no longer works. Key to the strategy is to connect customers to a “smart shop floor” using propriety technology called the “Suuchi Grid.” This gives them real time access to the production process. The Suuchi Grid begins with data because, as Ramesh said, “prediction is the new commodity.” By using predictive consumer analytics, “you can navigate future decisions across the supply chain,” she added.
Using data analysis and historical buying patterns, companies are able to more efficiently plan raw material purchasing and production planning before going to market with something the consumer may not even want. A third point in Ramesh’s strategy is building in transparency that can monetize a company’s methods at selling point, using tracking technology that can help companies transform their brands by knowing where their clothes—and the components they contain—come from and market the brand that way, too.
Suuchi Inc. is able to produce replenishment orders ranging from 100 pieces to thousands in just five days thanks to a vertical operation. The company designs, samples, produces, ships and handles logistics for a wide array of apparel categories and fabrics, as well as some soft accessories, with plans to expand into leather goods and shoes.
Ramesh has worked to create a local community of manufacturers that address the last mile of the supply chain by manufacturing locally near the heart of the industry in New York City.
“We have grown our customer base in the last year, signing on a lot of bigger customers while not still serving emerging brands,” Ramesh said Monday. “We have also hired a lot of software engineers to build up the technology.”
Kearny Point, where Suuchi’s new facility will be, is a 2 million-square-foot flexible office and light industrial business hub undergoing redevelopment in Kearny. It houses Building 78 and Kearny Works, a collaborative workspace offering creative office and co-working options for a diverse group of businesses. Building 78 is now part of NJ Ignite, a new Economic Development Agency program that provides rent support for technology and life sciences companies operating in environments that includes incubators, accelerators or other collaborative work spaces.