Blog: IAF day two: Time to talk globalisation
Joe Ayling | 31 October 2008
The agenda turns to globalisation in Maastricht today (31 October) after a fascinating first day of debate yesterday among delegates at the IAF World Apparel Convention.
VF Corporation sourcing director Thomas Glaser and Esquel CEO John Che will be among those casting views on the future geography of apparel manufacturing and consumption.
just-style was impressed by yesterday's line up here, with Tommy Hilfiger CFO Ludo Onnink giving an honest assessment of the company's journey, relocation to Europe and takeover by Apax Partners in 2006.
He seems determined to pitch the company's new structure against lifestyle brand competitors such as Hugo Boss, Lacoste, Diesel, Guess and Puma.
"You always need to be prepared for changing consumer trends," He said. "But global brands never die."
Onnink was followed by Liz Claiborne CEO Bill McComb, who gave an equally refreshing outlook on today's fashion business.
McComb, who joined Claiborne in November 2006, was soon charged with streamlining the company's 48-brand portfolio by reviewing 16 of them.
"We were an inch deep and a mile wide," he openly admitted. "This company bought some great great brands, but too many of them."
McComb has shed many of these brands - which include Emma James, Intuitions, JH Collectibles, Tapemeasure, Prana, Ellen Tracey, Laundry By Design, C&C California, and, last week, Enyce - at just the right time given the current financial crisis.
As the day progressed, corporate social responsibility (CSR) grabbed the limelight, with brands now fully aware that consumer trust is all the more vital in a stringent marketplace.
Indeed, the fashion industry is seeing a sea-change from translucent to transparent sustainability practices.
Following the day's schedule, delegates were invited to dinner at the Grotten van Kanne caves in neighbouring Belgium.
There was no sign of Batman and Robin, but the evening was a great chance to catch up with industry friends and learn about new businesses in a still healthily segmented marketplace.
Maastricht has been an excellent choice for the convention, and its windy streets and festive feel at this time of year inspires.
The IAF, which for the first time took sole charge for this year's event, has done a great job and just-style looks forward to revisiting old friends in 2009, when New Delhi, India, will play host.
By Joe Ayling, news editor.
US fashion brand group VF Corporation believes Asian manufacturers will continue their hold on the global apparel supply chain, despite reports of rising costs in China....
Confirmation that digital supply chains are top of mind for apparel industry executives came last week with the latest plans from global sourcing specialist Li & Fung....
As a barometer of the issues top of mind for apparel sourcing executives, it is hard to beat the annual Prime Source Forum in Hong Kong. ...
Over the past month, Donald Trump and his team failed to offer any clear plan to ensure Americans would "Buy American, Hire American" - while the British government's attempts to clarify the specifics...
- Why collaboration is key to fashion supply chains
- Rana Plaza four years on – Timeline of change
- Industry groups reaffirm commitment to Bangladesh
- Trump and Brexit get a dose of pragmatism
- Where does VF supply chain sit in growth strategy?
- Adidas to digitalise Speedfactory concept
- Nike filed patent for "reinforced denim"
- M&S extends sourcing deal with Lindsey brothers
- US Q1 in brief – Columbia Sportswear, Amazon
- Gap unveils five-year sustainable fibres pledge
- Global market review of denim and jeanswear – forecasts to 2022
- When Things Go Wrong - A Practical Guide to Managing Common Problems in Apparel Sourcing
- Clothing Market in the Top 5 American Countries to 2021 - Market Size, Development, and Forecasts
- Outdoor performance apparel 2016: A broader perspective
- Southeast Asia strategic sourcing review – a focus on Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar