LINKINGPlus sets stage for a closer-knit intl tex­tile in­dus­try

China Daily (USA) - - XI­A­MEN SPE­CIAL - By ZHUAN TI

The Chi­nese in­ter­na­tional gar­ment-in­dus­try co­op­er­a­tion fair LINKINGPlus was held in Xi­a­men on Nov 6. It was be­lieved to open the door of the Chi­nese gar­ment in­dus­try for more op­por­tu­ni­ties

The main pur­pose of the fair — a part of the on­go­ing Xi­a­men In­ter­na­tional Fash­ion Week from Nov 5 to 13 — was to link the Chi­nese do­mes­tic mar­ket to in­ter­na­tional sup­pli­ers, brands and dis­trib­u­tors, in or­der to boost in­dus­try traf­fic to meet cos­tumers’ grow­ing de­mand for up­mar­ket goods.

“We don’t ex­pect our orig­i­nal de­sign man­u­fac­tur­ers to leap into up­mar­ket sec­tors in Europe in the blink of an eye. I don’t think it’s re­al­is­tic. By in­tro­duc­ing ex­pe­ri­enced for­eign de­sign­ers or in­dus­try man­agers, we can start up­grad­ing our prod­ucts,” said Chen Dapeng, vice-pres­i­dent of the China Na­tional Gar­ment As­so­ci­a­tion. “Some luxury brands used to be man­u­fac­tured in Turkey only, then they trans­ferred to Italy or the vice-pres­i­dent of the China Na­tional Gar­ment As­so­ci­a­tion, ex­changes opin­ions with for­eign de­sign­ers. Czech Repub­lic, and now they are in China.”

Fac­ing China’s need for an in­dus­trial up­grade, ex­perts from coun­tries with es­tab­lished mar­kets for luxury goods rec­og­nize China’s huge po­ten­tial to be de­vel­oped.

Francesco Fiordelli, a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Ital­ian luxury brands com­mit­tee Al­t­agamma, said there is huge de­mand from the in­ter­na­tional medium and high­end mar­kets, but there are not enough sup­pli­ers and The 2016 Xi­a­men In­ter­na­tional Fash­ion Week kicks off on Nov 5 in the Chi­nese coastal city, with a grand open­ing fea­tur­ing a fash­ion show and music gala. man­u­fac­tur­ers that can meet the re­quire­ment. “I be­lieve Chi­nese com­pa­nies can to­tally fill in the gap, and I am very happy to be able to help Chi­nese pro­duc­tion to up­grade to a higher level.”

A num­ber of well-known, lo­cal Chi­nese brands came to the fair, such as Joeone, Xtep and Sept­wolves, in search of qual­ity re­sources, while many in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies and de­sign­ers were mak­ing their way into the Chi­nese mar­ket seek­ing prof­its.

Dur­ing the fair, over 100 del­e­gates from more than 10 coun­tries gath­ered to­gether to in­ves­ti­gate the po­ten­tial of the Chi­nese mar­ket.

Hiromi Shi­mazu, a Ja­panese de­signer with a per­sonal fe­male brand, was at the fair to find busi­ness part­ners.

“I’m a mem­ber of The Ja­pan Ap­parel-Fash­ion In­dus­try Coun­cil, and this is the first op­por­tu­nity for the Chi­nese govern­ment to cre­ate the link with JAFIC. I’d like to meet some re­tail­ers and dis­trib­u­tors in China and I would love to ex­plore more,” said Hiromi.

To break into the do­mes­tic mar­ket and com­pete with lo­cal com­pa­nies is an­other pur­pose for for­eign in­vestors to at­tend the fair.

Peter Ouw­erk­erk, the China op­er­a­tion man­ager of Hans­boodt, a Dutch man­nequin com­pany, be­lieved this event could help to pro­mote brand aware­ness for their man­nequin busi­ness.

“We al­ready have big busi­ness in Xi­a­men sell­ing our man­nequins to high-end in­ter­na­tional brands. But we also want to ex­pand our busi­ness with lo­cals. It is a bit chal­leng­ing be­cause most of the Chi­nese brands use do­mes­tic sup­pli­ers. I hope we can con­tact lots of lo­cal fash­ion brands from Guangzhou and from Xi­a­men.”

For the for­eign brands will­ing to co­op­er­ate, the China Na­tional Gar­ment As­so­ci­a­tion is also keen to help and pro­vide a plat­form to link the do­mes­tic ser­vices to in­di­vid­u­als and com­pa­nies.

“We can link for­eign com­pa­nies to po­ten­tial part­ners in Jin­jiang or Shishi city around Xi­a­men, as well as many sup­pli­ers and man­u­fac­tur­ers in Guang­dong,” said Chen.

The fair has also in­vited lead­ing com­pa­nies in the gar­ment in­dus­tries, like Chao­room from South Korea and Cegid from France, to hold work­shops and lead dis­cus­sions to share their ex­pe­ri­ences as ma­ture busi­nesses. Ren Xiao­jin and Zhang Yi con­trib­uted to the story.

Chen Dapeng (sec­ond left),

Hiromi Shi­mazu, a Ja­panese de­signer, ex­hibits her brand at the fair and ex­pects to find busi­ness part­ners.

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