New York - West Africa's largest clothing manufacturer, DTRT Apparel Ltd (DTRT), has announced a major investment from investment firm Verod Capital Management and Red Bull GmbH. The amount remains private.
Verod Capital is investing alongside a major strategic investor, Red Bull, which will be an anchor customer for DTRT, and DTRT will be a part of Red Bull's global apparel sourcing operations.
Commenting the deal, Skip Richmond, co-founder and co-CEO of DTRT Apparel said in a statement that "Given today's global macro-economics, apparel brands are increasingly looking for cost competitive, socially responsible, long-term manufacturing alternatives outside Asia. This milestone deal is an affirmation of our vision of sustainable apparel manufacturing in Ghana – with the highest production, environmental and labour standards – and affords us the opportunity to significantly expand our production capacity and capabilities to make DTRT Africa's leading apparel manufacturer. We're very excited to work with our partners and strategic investors to drive growth and provide our value-added services on a larger scale to current and future customers."
In the same joint statement, Danladi Verheijen, Verod’s managing director said: "Verod Capital's investment in DTRT is predicated on the very rapid growth of the Ghanaian economy, due largely to its political stability, and Ghana's unique advantages for cost-competitive production. The DTRT team are highly experienced operators who are also 100% committed to improving the lives of West Africans, which aligns with the mission of Verod Capital. We look forward to working with the Founders to build up this business but also to help West Africa become a major hub for apparel manufacturing."
DTRT employs over 2,000 people in West Africa, procuring textiles from Asia and exporting primarily to the EU and US markets, benefitting from supportive trade arrangements between the US/EU and Ghana.
DTRT Apparel was founded in 2013 by two apparel industry entrepreneurs in a joint venture with a renowned Ghanaian fashion entrepreneur, Salma Salifu, Managing Director of Dignity DTRT, the company's manufacturing partner.
Environmental sustainability is at the core of the DTRT business model: The business works with suppliers to produce a polyester fabric that requires 80 percent less water for dyeing than the traditional fabric-dyeing process. DTRT estimates they have saved over 200,000,000 litres of water over the last five years using this fabric.