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February 1, 2019

Top stories on just-style in January…

By Beth Wright

Top stories on just-style in January were dominated by our Outlook 2019 insights, with readers keen to see what 2019 has in store for the apparel industry. Also popular was news that Bangladesh’s government has vowed to revisit the minimum wages for some ready-made garment workers, the inauguration of two more industrial parks in Ethiopia, Chinese clothing companies are investing in Egypt to try to avoid Trump’s tariffs, PVH Corp has shaken up its Calvin Klein business, and Li & Fung hired its first chief digital officer.

1: Outlook 2019 – Apparel industry challenges and opportunities It won’t come as any surprise that uncertainty, complexity and volatility in the global economy, US-China trade and Brexit, along with rapidly changing consumption patterns, are pushing the global apparel industry and its supply chain into unchartered territory in the year ahead. But according to feedback from a panel of executives consulted by just-style, disruptions also present huge opportunities for retailers and brands to rethink their business models and explore new ways of working – especially when it comes to using new technologies and data.

2: Ethiopia industrial park progress continues apace Two more industrial parks have been inaugurated in Ethiopia as the government continues its vision to transform the country into a world-leading apparel and textile hub.

3: PVH outlines restructuring plan for Calvin Klein US apparel giant PVH Corp is shaking up its Calvin Klein business, including streamlining its North America division – and has updated its outlook for the rest of its financial year.

4: Outlook 2019 – Apparel sourcing trends and strategies How is the sourcing landscape likely to shift in 2019, and what strategies can help apparel firms and their suppliers to stay ahead? As new barriers, trade tensions, and the need for speed continue to weigh on the apparel business, fashion companies need to develop contingency plans. Shifting some sourcing away from China, supplier consolidation, new investments closer to home, and the shrewd used of data and advanced analytics are some of the tactics executives recommend.

5: How TexOps is restructuring to hedge Central America ‘renaissance’ “The supply chain is getting whipsawed,” is how David Ha, owner of Salvadoran sportswear maquila TexOps, describes the state of the current global sourcing market in this exclusive interview with just-style.

6: Outlook 2019 – What else can the apparel industry expect? We asked industry executives what keeps them awake at night – and other issues the apparel sector should be keeping a close eye on in the year ahead. Not surprisingly, increased levels of uncertainty and ambiguity are top of the agenda for many, with the real winners in 2019 and beyond likely to be those industry leaders (and companies) who are willing to evolve and adapt to rapidly changing consumer needs, and emerging opportunities.

7: Gymboree Group warns of more store closures US children’s apparel retailer Gymboree Group has warned more store closures for its Gymboree and Crazy 8 chains can be expected over the course of the year, as reports continue to circulate it is gearing up for a second bankruptcy filing in under two years.

8: Chinese clothing firms target Egypt to avoid Trump tariffs A free trade zone system in Egypt that links businesses with Israeli suppliers is being targeted by Chinese clothing companies wanting to access the US, amid fears an accelerating Trump trade war risks exports through standard channels.

9: Li & Fung speeds digital strategy with new hire Li & Fung has taken another step to building “the supply chain of the future” after hiring Darren Palfrey to the new role of chief digital officer (CDO). 

10: Bangladesh proposes new wages for garment workers The Bangladesh government is to revise the minimum wages for some ready-made garment workers following eight days of widespread unrest – with workers warned they must return to work or risk losing pay.

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