Blog: Leonie BarrieA look back as we move into 2015

Leonie Barrie | 5 January 2015

As we return to the swing of things, a good way to start 2015 is to take a look back at the top news stories, analysis pieces, comment articles and interviews published on just-style in 2014.

Among the industry executives we spoke with were William E Connor, chairman and CEO of William E Connor & Associates; Crystal Group's CEO Andrew Lo; Helena Helmersson, head of sustainability for H&M; and Seth Ellison, Levis Strauss & Co's president for Europe.

And the most-read stories included a look at the current state of play in world garment exports, South Asia's role in the post-Bangladesh world, Nike's "manufacturing revolution", the evolution of Ethiopia and Myanmar as apparel sourcing destinations, and industry efforts to improve factory safety.

Among wider efforts to improve working conditions in the ready-made garment industry, the Better Work Bangladesh initiative is due to "get going in earnest" this year. First announced 14 months ago as part of a package of measures to help shore up the sector in the wake of the Tazreen Fashion factory fire and the Rana Plaza building collapse, it should be "fully functional" by the middle of 2015, just-style has been told.

And the second part of our series on agents and buying offices suggests governments and tax authorities are finally getting smarter when it comes to the issue of transfer pricing.

Meanwhile, sporting goods giant Nike has homed in on the "tremendous energy" in women's apparel and believes there is a significant opportunity for the company to grow this business further globally.

But global lifestyle brand Barbour is facing a four-week strike by UK warehouse workers over "forced" changes to terms and hours.

Hedge fund Lion Capital is understood to have sent a letter to the board of American Apparel, pressing the struggling retailer to consider options including a sale of the company.

And retail veteran Harold Tillman is believed to be mulling an approach to buy back the Jaeger store chain from private equity firm Better Capital. The former chairman of the British Fashion Council ran the fashion label for a decade until its takeover in 2012.


Ethiopia unrest a sourcing risk?

Fashion retailer H&M and UK based glove and leather manufacturer Pittards both say they are monitoring the situation in Ethiopia closely after the country's government declared a state of emergency af...


Asia facing up to increased competition

Increasing competition for garment sourcing contracts is seeing China not only being challenged by other countries in Asia, but by sub-Saharan African and even Russian suppliers too. And it is pushing...


US Q3 in brief – Columbia Sportswear, HanesBrands, Rocky Brands, Gymboree

In the most recent third-quarter filings from US apparel and footwear brands and retailers, Skechers said it has achieved a new third-quarter sales record for the period, while Under Armour delivered ...


Cambodia raises garment worker wages

The monthly minimum wage for workers in Cambodia's textile, garment and footwear sector is set to rise to $153 from January next year, following a vote on the issue last week. The increase marks a ris...


Sportswear initiatives start to take shape

The results of two highly-anticipated initiatives in the sportswear sphere were revealed last week: the launch of Under Armour’s new UAS lifestyle brand and the first pair of running shoes created at ...

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