Sweater manufacturers and knitwear companies have targeted longer-term business

sweater manufacturers and knitwear companies have targeted longer-term business.


The spread of the epidemic to the whole world means huge pressure for foreign trade companies. A survey conducted by the Ministry of Commerce in conjunction with China Credit Insurance against more than 7,000 foreign trade companies showed that after the epidemic occurred, more than 90% of the companies were forced to postpone shipments and foreign exchange collection.


Video conferencing and international mail have been busy in the business department of Shanghai knitwear company during the recent period. As a foreign trade company with sweater export as its core business, orders have been hit, making business department managers feel anxious. Communicate with overseas customers in a timely manner, evaluate existing production capacity, and formulate plans for longer-term foreign trade business development. Although difficult, they have focused on a longer-term future.


A large number of orders have been delayed


"Now the orders are only about half of the original ones, and many of them have been cancelled or stopped." After the outbreak, the order situation was quite frustrating.


Recalling the situation two months ago, Wang Wei, deputy general manager in charge of foreign trade business, still has a fresh memory. At that time, the Spring Festival holiday had just passed, and the epidemic had a great impact in China. Overseas customers were worried about supply chain problems and could not deliver on time. "We also communicated with customers for the first time, hoping to get customers' understanding. Now, the situation is reversed."


"In February, we were trying to prove to our customers that 'we are good', which will not affect our business. In March, we will continue to confirm with our customers," Are you okay? " "The ridicule on the Internet became a reality. The first half and the second half of the epidemic were caught up by foreign trade companies.


According to her, at this stage, many customers have requested to reduce production, or simply suspend production, and a large number of orders have been extended to a deadlock.


Wang Wei, who had just hung up the phone, was about to start another video conference. "Now overseas customers are also working from home, and they have a long time for feedback. We have to stare at each day to maintain close contact with foreign guests and have first-hand information for timely response." Because of the time difference, she was still in the middle of the night. Reply to the email at the desk, hoping to get the fastest reply.


A similar situation has plagued almost all foreign trade companies. A person in charge of a private foreign trade company revealed that the company's order volume fell by 90% year-on-year. "Originally, spring is the peak season for the apparel industry. I did not expect to encounter an epidemic. Although the factory resumed work, there was no single way to do it." Under the dilemma, the company can only let employees take turns. "In the apparel industry, the domestic market also tends to be saturated. There is not much opportunity for export to domestic sales at present, and we can only control costs and wait for opportunities."


Step by step towards independent design


Delayed orders, business difficulties, and foreign trade companies under the epidemic are also looking for opportunities.


Wang Bei, deputy general manager of the textile decoration company in charge of the sweater business, now considers not only how to minimize the impact of order losses, but also how to maintain orders and customers after the outbreak.


Nowadays, on the shelves of department stores in Japan, Europe and the United States, the mid-to-high-end sweater products of textile decoration have their own characteristics, and the export price has reached more than $ 20 per piece, which is also very popular. This gave her more inspiration.


"In the past, our exports were all OEM models, and the brand itself mastered the core technology, design, development of new products, and sales channels. We were only responsible for manufacturing. The epidemic hit, let us rethink traditional manufacturing. Rely on our sweaters Design the R & D center platform and resources, and gradually transform to the ODM model. On the basis of providing traditional foreign trade services, we can also independently develop all or part of the raw materials, models, and weaving organizations of clothing products, and serve customers on the cloud platform. Provide value-added services such as derivative products and derivative design push. "Wang Bei said that such a transformation is an inevitable trend.


"Chinese manufacturing companies should not only have pure production capacity, but should fully participate in and integrate into both ends of the market and respond quickly to user experience so as to be more competitive in the international market." She pointed out that in the short term, Textile and apparel exports will shrink market demand due to the epidemic in Europe and America, and will lose 1-2 seasons of sales opportunities. "However, based on the company's own innovation and development, production and research and development capabilities, the stickiness of large customers has not been affected by the epidemic. Many customers also made it clear that after the epidemic, all orders will continue, or even increase."


Undertake more international production capacity


According to data released by the General Administration of Customs, in the first two months of this year, clothing exports were 112.26 billion yuan, down 18.7%; textiles were 96.23 billion yuan, down 18.7%. During the epidemic, textile decoration companies had fewer foreign trade orders, but their sweater factories in Ethiopia were accelerating in full swing.


The general manager of the company Li Jie saw the epidemic as an opportunity to "practice internal strength." He said that "crisis" means that "danger" and "opportunity" coexist. The sudden decrease in orders is dangerous. The short window period also gives companies the opportunity to repair and upgrade in time.


In his view, Africa is one of the regions with the most future “textile base + manufacturing base + sales base” in the textile industry. Once the sweater factory in Ethiopia is put into operation, it will make full use of local cheap land, labor, and power resources Advantages, enhance the supply chain layout of sweater products and the internationalization of production capacity. In the future, the sweaters produced here will be cheaper and more cost-effective.


Seizing the broad market brought by the “Belt and Road”, in-depth cooperation with African countries along the route, and undertaking more international capacity transfers in the manufacturing industry will become new opportunities for knitwear manufacturers to enhance their core competitiveness.


At present, most sweater manufacturers are seriously affected. But Li Jie said that textile decoration should strive to become the first enterprise to stand up after a fall. Behind this, of course, companies need to have a competitive advantage, whether it is the product, or all aspects of the supply chain. Under the epidemic, this foreign trade company has set its sights on the future.