Abdullah Ki l is one of the most important people in the clothing sector. The picture he draws shows that there are serious problems in men’s clothing. “Many things will change in the next three years,” says the businessman and adds that the big players

Capital (Turkey) - - INTERVIEW -

You were the first Turkish clothing brand to open a store in China. How did this idea come about?

Unbelievably beautiful, high quality goods are being produced in China. In China it is enough to make the right goods at the right time for the right price. If you want quality in China, then quality goods appear. And they are produced with good workmanship. You set the price accordingly. As a result, I discovered China before 2001. I saw that good business could be done there and we also did it.

How did the transition from production to stores take place?

During my later contacts in China I was struck by the number of people who were rapidly becoming wealthy. 1.5 billion people live in China. 20 per cent of these are very rich. I mean, there are currently 300 million wealthy people in China. They have the same living standards as American citizens. Can you think of 300 million people? Multiply Turkey by four. Bearing all of these things in mind we opened our first store in Guangzhou 18 months ago. The smallest size in Turkey is the largest size in China. The patterns, the bodies, everything is different. For this reason we prepared a separate collection for China.

Did you achieve what you hoped for in China? How are sales?

Sales are excellent. We sell mostly casual clothes and trousers. The Chinese are very interested in foreign brands. Profitability is also very high. For example, we have shirts made in China. I can sell this shirt in our store in China for three times the price that I sell it in Turkey. In our store in China we can sell the tee-shirts, tricot and ties that we produce in China for three times the price that we sell them for in Turkey. What are your targets for China? We are opening two more new stores this year. One of these will be in Beijing, the other in Shanghai. Once the new stores have become established, we shall open some new ones in their place. One of our most important targets in China is to enter department stores. We want to open corner stores here. In order to be able to do this we need to open between three and five Ki l stores in China. Then we want to raise awareness of our brand in China.

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