Blog: Leonie BarrieGearing up for Prime Source Forum

Leonie Barrie | 24 March 2012

As a barometer of the latest challenges and opportunities facing the apparel supply chain, the annual Prime Source Forum in Hong Kong is hard to beat. Bringing together senior executives from across the global apparel industry supply chain, it really does offer an unrivalled opportunity to exchange ideas and opinions as they relate to the sourcing of clothing and footwear - and more often than not throws up as many new questions as it does answers.  

I'm lucky enough to be here again this week, not only attending as a delegate but also hosting an on-stage conversation with Henry Tan, the chief executive officer of Hong Kong's largest listed garment firm, Luen Thai Holdings Limited - a conglomerate with revenues of around US$1bn and a flagship business that produces over 80m garments a year. Having spoken with Henry already I'm wondering how we'll be able to condense the breadth of his knowledge and insight into the allotted time - although I'll endeavour, of course, to bring some of the highlights of our "chat" to you here at just-style.

The three-day event, which runs from 28-30 March (including a day of workshops) at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, will include more than 50 speakers and panellists across seven sessions.

Issues on the table this year include the outlook for the fashion industry amid global financial uncertainty, the impact that China's economic success is likely to have on sourcing, the trend to a 'China-plus' sourcing matrix, and the new role of sustainability. There will also be sessions on the globalisation of retail and its impact on the international supply chain, the power of the internet and social networking, and solutions to closing the talent gap in the fashion industry.

This year the Forum is being extended to include footwear, and in keeping with this theme there will also be a keynote address from Ronald Fromm, chairman of US retailer Brown Shoe Co.  

The event always manages to provide a packed agenda, and this year looks like being no exception. It's also the reason why major brands and retailers such as Adidas, Ann Taylor, Columbia Sports, Cortefiel, Esprit, Hugo Boss, Kmart, Quiksilver and Ralph Lauren are sending along delegates.

As a media partner of the event, just-style will have a stand there - so please feel free to pop over to say hello to me or my colleague James Jordan. James manages our corporate accounts, and will also be happy to explain details of company-wide subscriptions to just-style. And if there are any questions for Henry Tan that you'd like me to add to my list, just click here to let me know.


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