just-style authors and correspondents
Mike Flanagan is CEO of Clothesource Limited, which provides apparel buyers and sellers throughout the world with the hard data they need to understand their competitiveness. Clothesource, with the world's largest collection of intelligence on clothing price comparisons, supplier capabilities and national resources, provides both buyers and sellers with advice and training on improving sourcing and selling skills.
Mike began his career in the advertising industry in the UK and Italy, before moving into retailing. Before setting up Clothesource, he held a number of senior international buying, marketing and operations posts in the retail divisions of groups such as Associated British Foods, British Petroleum and US Shoe.
Columns by Mike Flanagan
A forthright take on the follies the world’s apparel buying community has to deal with, from Mike Flanagan, CEO of Clothesource – and his suggestions for putting them right.
Articles by Mike Flanagan
Despite years of denial, British garment-making showed serious signs of a revival in the second half of 2015. Mike Flanagan takes a closer look, and asks: Is the long-anticipated UK onshoring boom finally coming into sight?
The British will vote on 23 June whether to stay in the EU or not. By early March, opinion polls showed voters split about 50/50, with about a third still unsure. So far, neither side has been straightforward about the effects of leaving (known as a "Brexit") or staying. Here's how Mike Flanagan sees Brexit supporters' arguments affecting Britain's apparel industry.
In a Rant published on just-style earlier this month, Mike Flanagan stressed the importance of finding new sources of retail efficiency rather than worrying about rising prices. He now asks whether Primark has identified where apparel retailers should be looking – or whether US commentators are right when they claim the business is fundamentally flawed?
There's hardly an apparel industry commentator on the planet who's not forever going on about rising cost prices, writes Mike Flanagan. But he also wonders how often any of them look at what buyers are paying.
Don't believe those New Year forecasts, warns Mike Flanagan, as he debunks a few stories about four issues that are likely to be important in garment sourcing for some time.
In his last comment of the year, Mike Flanagan offers a seasonal suggestion for solving several global and industry problems.
Last week's announcement by Adidas that it expects its costs to rise sharply over the next five years underlines some crucial changes buyers in different countries have seen in their sourcing operations since the beginning of this century, explains Mike Flanagan.
China is using a catchy English-language TV ad to promote its 13th Five-Year Plan for the five years to 2020. But does the Plan really tell us how garment-making in China will be affected? asks Mike Flanagan.
The Flanarant - Will the TPP pass into law? Last week, on 5 November, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) published the detailed text of the agreement that its 12 potential members had reached exactly a month earlier. Publication coincided with a number of events illustrating just how unpredictable the deal’s approval by those countries’ legislatures is likely to be. They raise a number of questions:
A promised referendum on Britain’s continuing membership of the EU – and the possibility of a Brexit in two years’ time – would have massive implications for world apparel trade, according to Mike Flanagan.
- Why have US FTA imports fallen to a record low?
- Hanesbrands sourcing to cut Pacific Brands costs
- Why China makers are moving out or moving online
- Multiple country choices require complex decisions
- Apparel manufacturing hubs vying for business
- Li & Fung divests Asia distribution business
- US looks to boost trade with Sri Lanka
- Vietnam textile sector calls for strategy update
- Aeropostale to close 154 stores amid bankruptucy
- US Q1 in brief: Wolverine Worldwide, Weyco