Apparel industry hot issues
just-style's highly-regarded staff of columnists have been selected to deliver the very best in apparel and textile industry opinion across a broad spectrum of disciplines from emerging markets and the environment to forecasts and finance.
Ahead of Scotland's crucial referendum vote, retailers have weighed into the debate about the long-term implications if the nation decides to become an independent country, and the impact it will have on their businesses. Katie Smith takes a closer look.
After booking a "stellar" first-half performance, UK fashion giant Next Plc has detailed the progress it has made in upgrading the quality and design of its product ranges, new and improved sources of supply and the introduction of premium priced merchandise.
US retailers ramped up stocks for the start of the back-to-school season in July, pushing apparel imports for the month up by 13.4%, according to the latest data. But while China and Vietnam were the biggest beneficiaries of these gains, shipments from Bangladesh, Indonesia and Cambodia tumbled.
While well-established in many other industries, 3D technology is still relatively new to the fashion sector. But as just-style's latest management briefing shows, the tools are already starting to transform apparel firms – from design and development to 3D printing and technologies to help consumers try and buy better-fitting clothes.
US retail giant Gap Inc has made no secret of the fact that it faced - and continues to face - a number of compliance issues linked to its decision to start sourcing garments from Myanmar/Burma. And the extent of these challenges has now been revealed.
The second biggest shopping season of the year is drawing to a close, but it appears many people have yet to wrap up their back-to-school buying. With consumers continuing to remain cautious about their spending, promotions and bargains are set to drive sales for clothing and footwear retailers this year - with those offering on-trend product likely to fare best.
Li & Fung has outlined a number of new frontiers the global sourcing giant is looking to explore as it works through its three-year roadmap, which it hopes will capture new customers in new categories and countries, and increase the group's cross-selling activities.
Since Greenpeace published its Dirty Laundry report in 2011, revealing toxic chemicals in waste water discharges from two textile processing facilities in China, the environmental pressure group has been calling on apparel firms to remove these from their supply chains.
If Cambodia's US$5.5bn garment industry is not at a crossroads, it is approaching one, according to participants speaking to just-style at an industry trade show held in Phnom Penh.
The escalating tensions between Russia and the West came to a head last week when Putin ordered a year-long restriction on food imports. B while related to food, the apparel industry is unlikely to be immune from the effects of the standoff.
Half-way through the year and US apparel imports are taking shape to give a broader view of the trends so far - including average unit costs from China falling below those of Bangladesh. Not surprisingly, supply options in the first six months of 2014 point to China and Vietnam as the ongoing winners, while shipments from Bangladesh continue to drop.
Sustainability in the global textile and clothing industry is continuing to mature. In this month’s management briefing, just-style looks at ongoing developments including sustainability initiatives taking place in Asia, progress on closed loop supply chains, and the groundswell in green branding.
Data from major garment exporting countries to the EU and US shows who's winning and losing so far in 2014.
It's one thing to invest in a product lifecycle management (PLM) system - but another altogether to get the most value out of the solution. Indeed, according to industry experts speaking in London last week, PLM projects should be driven from a business perspective if they are to deliver real gains in terms of revenue, margin improvement and inventory efficiency - with users on board from the beginning.
This month, the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety, and the Accord on Fire and Building Safety both issued their first annual reports, providing an update on the work carried out on improving safety and working conditions in the country to date. just-style took a closer look.
Tesco this week announced its CEO, Philip Clarke, is to step down as it issued another profit warning. The news has come as little surprise to the industry who believe his successor, Dave Lewis, could be just what the retail behemoth needs.
Indian apparel exporters have demanded a series of favourable policy decisions from the new Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government.
Faced with the growing risks of producing in Bangladesh and Cambodia as well as the rising cost of countries like China and Indonesia, it is unsurprising that apparel giant Gap Inc should begin sourcing from Myanmar. just-style takes a closer look at the country's textile and garment industry.
Although there has been a slight improvement in the proper payment of wages and benefits within Cambodia's garment and footwear industry, non-compliance in areas related to worker health and safety and fainting remains "significant", a new study has found.
The last few years have seen tremendous changes in the technological landscape of 'product lifecycle management' (PLM) and 'enterprise resource planning' (ERP) systems. This month's Management Briefing takes a look at the trends and the future of supply chain software.
UK retailer Marks & Spencer has described its efforts to ensure workers in the factories it sources from are paid a fair living wage is an "ever-moving feast". But it is making progress, as executives explained during an update to the group's Plan A sustainability initiative.
There are growing opportunities in the US for African clothing and textile producers, but a long-term preferential trade agreement is needed for them to develop supply chains that can meet demand.
Investment in the Burma/Myanmar garment sector is continuing apace, with Gap Inc to start sourcing its first garments and Hong Kong companies preparing to set up a new apparel industrial park in Yangon.
The United States Fashion Industry Association has published the results of its first-ever benchmarking study, garnering views from executives on their business outlook, sourcing practices, utilisation of free trade agreements and preference programmes, and views on trade policy.
Sainsbury's has issued its first-quarter trading update, in which it revealed its clothing business has continued to grow strongly, delivering double-digit like-for-like sales growth. Analysts believe the UK retailer is now reaping the benefits of considerable investment.
As US retailers stocked up in anticipation of a busy spring and summer, their preferred supplier choices in April continued to be led by China and Vietnam. But the decline in shipments from Bangladesh appears to be accelerating.
As brands and retailers set higher production standards and create ever more complex supply chains, they need to consider all the risks when switching suppliers. This month’s management briefing also looks at changes in China and other supplier countries, and technology to help track and oversee sourcing shifts.
Talks over the setting of a minimum wage for garment and textile workers in Cambodia are set to resume later this month, after global brands and retailers warned ongoing political instability and alleged human rights violations threaten the country's status as a strategic sourcing market
For buyers and foreign investors who have been piling into Vietnam's textile, clothing and footwear industries, this week's large-scale and increasingly violent anti-China protests may prove to be a wake-up call.
The Mauritian textile and apparel sector accounts for more than 55% of the country's export earnings. As a result, manufacturers are working hard to sustain this growth. just-style takes a closer look at the country's largest export.
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