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Footwear Industry News

Kenya AGOA stakeholders set target of doubling 2016 value of AGOA exports to the United States by 2025

Published: 18th Jan 2018
Author: From the East Africa Trade Hub. Published on January 18; 2018

Today the USAID Hub and the Kenya Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives joined Kenya’s private sector to review and validate a new Kenya National African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Strategy. Since 2010, Kenya has nearly doubled its exports to the U.S. under AGOA, from $225 million to $389 million in 2016. The new National AGOA Strategy outlines updated priority actions for Kenya to diversify its export portfolio with the goal of doubling the value exports to the U.S. under AGOA by 2025.
       The new strategy is the result of a supply-side and end-market analysis provided by the USAID Hub at the invitation of the Government of Kenya. The USAID Hub worked closely with government officials and the private sector to perform its analysis which included a series of stakeholder engagement workshops by sector.
The U.S. Government remains committed to contributing to Kenya’s economic growth. Duty-free access through AGOA supports Kenya’s efforts to bolster industrialization, create jobs and achieve economic prosperity. The apparel sector under AGOA is the largest contributor to job creation in Kenya currently credited with supporting over 200,000 full-time jobs. It is also Kenya’s highest earning sector, accounting for 85% of its $389 million in 2016 AGOA exports.
       The USAID Hub is also working with the Kenya Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives on a “East Africa Cotton, Textile and Apparel Workforce Development Initiative,” a collaborative effort with the private sector based on a partnership agreement between the USAID Hub and the American Apparel and Footwear Association. The partnership ensures U.S. brands and retailers’ goods are manufactured in accordance with best-in-class business practices and operations in East Africa, producing a win-win for trading partners. As part of that initiative, in July 2017 the USAID Hub signed a grant with Generation Program Kenya Limited, a local subsidiary of the McKinsey Social Initiative, to create 2,000 full-time jobs and provide over 100,000 hours in skills development for young people in the apparel industry.

Tags: Kenya, AGOA, USAID

Retailers\' financial results show inflation scourge is back

Published: 30th Nov 2017
Author: The Source Zimbabwe
HARARE, November 13 (The Source) – Zimbabwe’s largest retailer, OK Zimbabwe, last week said its internal tracking of inflation showed that inflation stood at 7,69% in September, much higher than the 0,78% given out by the Zimbabwe Statistics Agency (Zimstats), laying bare the difference between official figures and the situation on the ground.
OK Zimbabwe calculates its inflation based on the changes in prices of its product range. Its financial results are also reflective of the influence of high inflation. This explains why three main retailers are posting impressive performances relative to regional peers.
Three main retailers dominate the Zimbabwean market: OK Zimbabwe, TM Supermarkets and Choppies, all of whom are delivering good value to their shareholders despite a sluggish economy characterised by acute forex challenges and waning aggregate demand among other challenges.
The performance, as OK Zimbabwe said, is attributed to the inflationary environment coupled with the use of electronic means of payment as the economy moves to plastic money to counter the prevailing serious cash shortages.
Zim retailers perfomance at glance:
The largest retail group, OK Zimbabwe’s net income more than doubled to $5,1 million in the six months to September, from $2,3 million in the comparable period last year on increased revenue and inflationary pricing.
Revenue rose 22,6% to $268 million from $218,6 million in the same period last year.
Another retailer with operations in Zimbabwe, Choppies, which is listed in Botswana, also said revenue at its Zimbabwe operations grew by 17% in full year ended June despite a sluggish economy underlined by chronic shortages of cash.
The growth in revenue was despite a 3% decline in sales over the period, explaining the ‘inflation factor’ which is driving retailers performance in Zimbabwe.
Choppies has 32 outlets in Zimbabwe. It operates in South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia.
South African retailer Pick 'n Pay also echoes the same sentiments on its Zimbabwe operations stressing that its Zimbabwe associate, Pick n Pay TM Supermarkets, boosted the group’s half year revenue.
Pick n Pay’s Rest of Africa division increased by 12,6% to R2,3 billion ($170 million) while profit before tax was up 22,3% from R103,7 million ($7,7 million) to R126,8 million ($9,5 million), due to a strong performance from TM Supermarkets.
The group’s share of TM’s earnings grew 40,4% on last year to R40 million ($3 million). TM Supermarkets has 56 stores in Zimbabwe, 16 of which trade under the Pick 'n Pay banner. Pick 'n Pay controls 49% of TM , with the remainder held by Meikles.
Pick 'n Pay explicitly said that even though its franchise businesses outside South Africa did well in the period, the group’s share of profits of TM Supermarkets (its associate in Zimbabwe), continue to make an outstanding positive growth contribution.
Zimbabwe supermarkets operate in a market which is still significantly underpenetrated in terms of formal retail but face competition from an explosion in informal commerce. Supermarkets however have an edge over the informal which are predominantly cash based. The cash situation in the country has seen an upsurge in customers bracing to que in formal shops which offer an array of payment options other than cash.
However retailers are not immune to the forex challenges facing the economy at large, which constrain their capacity to meet foreign suppliers on time, posing product supply challenges.
They however leverage on the support from their parent companies, though not sufficient, to meet consumer demand and provide a wide range of products.
The performances of these supermarkets indicate that despite the sluggish outlook, Zimbabwe is a high performing economy which could get even better with the right policies. -

ATF: LTE hands over to Messe Frankfurt

Published: 31st Oct 2017
Author: Tony Dickson - S&V Editor

Pictured at the show were (from left) Kathryn Frew, show manager, SA shows Messe Frankfurt; Zhang Tao, secretary general, the Sub-Council of Textile Industry, CCPIT; Melisia La Cock, sales, SA shows Messe Frankfurt; William Scalco, member, LTE – leaders

Cape Town, SA - Local fair organiser LTE hosted its last Apparel, Textile & Footwear (ATF) fair, which ran from November 21-23 alongside the China Premium Tex Show.
Global fair organiser Messe Frankfurt will run ATF and its sister fair, Source Africa, from next year.
CCPIT TEX and United Asia were joint organisers with LTE of the China Premium Tex Show.
Tags: ATF, LTE

New testing facility in a country with poor environmental and safety record

Published: 31st Oct 2017
Dhaka, Bangladesh - Testing company SGS opened expanded textile and footwear testing facilities on November 1. The new facilities offer customers a full range of services for the textile and footwear industries.
SGS, which offers inspection, verification, testing and certification services, has more than 90 000 employees and over 2 000 offices and laboratories around the world.
Textiles and apparel make up more than 80% of Bangladesh’s total exports, according to the BGMEA, and, during the last decade, the leather and footwear sector has grown by more than 1000%. The opening of these new facilities will allow SGS to work with their customers at a much deeper level. The facility, with both physical and chemical testing capabilities, will give Bangladesh’s industry better access to domestic and international markets. 
  With a second testing laboratory in Chittagong, SGS provides high quality consumer product testing services throughout Bangladesh. In July, they hosted a series of five seminars to help Bangladesh’s industry suppliers understand the zero discharge goal, and waste water and sludge. -  
Tags: SGS

Sports footwear training offer: DTI seeks to broaden net

Published: 3rd Apr 2017
Author: Tony Dickson - S&V Editor

Pretoria (SA) – Following response to its earlier announcements about sports footwear design and manufacturing technology in China, the Department of Trade & Industry is keen to attract applications from a wider group of footwear factories. The offer is also open to major retailers.

        The criteria would be just as strict – young people with several years’ experience who show outstanding promise in design or manufacturing – but the DTI would like more factories to benefit from this offer by the Chinese Government, which will sponsor 30 South African students for a 28-day course.

        Successful applicants need only pay for their own visa cost. For further information, contact Simon Sello Mello at the DTI. – [+27 (0)12 394 1175, (0)72 338 1639,]

©2017 S&V Publications