David Hathiramani co-founded tailor A Suit That Fits eight years ago. The firm now spans 34 studios, across the UK, Ireland and America
Warren Bennett and I founded A Suit That Fits in June 2006.
Following a gap year teaching web design in a school in Nepal, Warren met a family of tailors who made him a fine woollen suit. When he returned to the UK he and I met up and together we decided to combine our respective IT and engineering backgrounds and our passion for business and tailoring to work with the tailors and create A Suit That Fits.
We wanted to revolutionise the tailoring industry by making bespoke suiting accessible to anybody, anywhere. We pay significantly above the local rate for manufacture; we also fund projects in the Nepalese school where Warren was volunteering when he originally met the family of tailors.
We tested the idea in Hampstead Market, London and when we sold our first two suits within 20 minutes, we knew it was a viable business idea.
We then set about creating a website whereby people could design their new bespoke suit step-by-step online using our innovative Style Wizard, and they could take their measurements using our measurement guide.
We then went on to grow a network of studios across the UK whereby people could visit an expert Style Advisor to get their measurements taken and have style advice. Though using our online tools, at the click of a button and by virtue of an internet connection, they could always design and order a new suit wherever they were in the world.
When you have a team that is based around the globe, and busy customers, you need technology that makes everything simple for them. Back in 2006, cloud computing (securing data in a secure online facility) was a relatively recent concept but was taking off. It was very advantageous to us as a new business starting up; it meant that we had fixed costs.
Before cloud computing everything was within the business; the cost of the server, repairs, connection, phone server and an application server were all hosted, which was less cost effective and more time-consuming.
Our tailors work on the same systems as our team in the UK. Google Apps hosts our emails, calendars, tasks and bespoke business applications. Google Apps is very beneficial as we are all using the system wherever we are in the world.
Google Apps has instant messaging so we can chat to our tailors directly, therefore providing the best service for our customers. With our 30 branches nationwide and our tailors based in Nepal expanding and growing the business is made a lot simpler, with all of our systems online we have endless opportunities for expansion.
As we were the first online tailors, all of our business relayed on being connected with our customers and our tailors, without this great connection and communication our business wouldn’t be where it is today.
Read our contributor biography of David Hathiramani