PRODUCTION AND DESIGN INNOVATION IN FASHION APPAREL TECHNOLOGY
Ranil Vitarana, Chief Technology Officer at apparel titan MAS Holdings, emerged from a background in electronic engineering, having mastered his studies at Imperial College, London, entering the textile industry early on through the occasional and then soon targeted work placement. These employments ranged from managing computerised aspects of companies to merchandising branches, eventually leading to contract manufacturing. He noted that people were good in silos but did not know the entire industry. Ranil began working at MAS Holdings, developing the first initiatives of many in the company such as likes of the sourcing arm of MAS, product development and design offices, setting up offices in Hong Kong and New York.
Ever-focused on learning new things, he was always present when original developments were created in the recent history of the company.
In discussing the role of technology having an impact on the production of apparel, Ranil states that the condition of innovation around the time of 2007, when the MAS Research & Innovation imperative began, was uncertain as what the definition of it could possibly be. A few years later the developer notes an understanding of innovation was realised. “What more can we do?”, Ranil questioned at the time, of which his purpose was to understand how the company could use the knowledge of fashion design and the body, and how they can impact other industries while looking at technological developments and innovative upheaval. He stressed the fact that exploring opportunities is a fundamental exercise that he practiced to enhance the growth of the applied art of fashion design through technology.