|The ASW Marketplace was a buzz of activity last week as the platform hosted its first live V-Expo 2-day conference. The subjects of the sessions centred around the mega theme of ‘Sourcing Beyond China’ and talked about critical areas of the industry - Trends, Business Directions, Sourcing, Technology, Supply Chain Management and Market Intelligence by global industry experts.|
|The attendees to the V-Expo got the opportunity to hear 14 industry experts over two days on topics that are not only relevant for today, but also for the future. The inaugural session was a panel discussion on ‘Re-Inventing Supply Chain Collaborations Between Bangladesh And India’, which deliberated on the ways forward in terms of creating fruitful and mutually beneficial collaborations for business sustainability.|
|The session saw experts and stakeholders from both India and Bangladesh take the mike in support of better collaboration, but concerns were also openly aired. Despite major challenges on all fronts from logistics to trust issues, all the participants unanimously agreed that collaboration in textile value chain between the two countries is a must not only to stave off competition from China but also to put up a joint front to attract the global buyers as a region, to exploit the emerging opportunities.|
|The discussion was interactively moderated by Senior Vice President of Technopak Advisors, Amit Gugnani who has deep understanding of businesses in both countries. The panel of experts were Mukesh Bansal (Senior Vice President of Vardhman Fabrics), Arshad Jamal (Chairman of Tusuka Group), Srihari Balakrishnan (MD of KG Fabriks) and Sandeep Golam (Group Operations Director, Denimach Ltd.- Armana Group), all of whom stressed on the need to make a tectonic shift from transactional relationship to natural partnership to address the supply chain challenges and boost garment trade.|
|The second panel discussion on ‘Preferred Supplier in The New Normal’ on Day-2 of the event had Anika Passi, Global Sourcing Expert who as a moderator kept the thoughts flowing among the panellists - Mridula Lall, Global Sourcing Manager, Indiska; Sanjay Thakur, Sourcing Director, Ethical Sourcing; Venky Nagan, Group CEO, Asmara and Alpana Razdan, Country Manager (India and Bangladesh), Falabella. The session reiterated that besides agility, flexibility, adoption of the latest technology and focus on every aspect of sustainability, exporters need to be financially sound to face the challenges today and emerge as preferred suppliers.|
|The panel cautioned that China is down but not out and the country is investing in many countries, so there will be indirect competition for other destinations in the future. On a positive note, all the speakers agreed that the majority of Indian apparel exporters are on the right track as preferred suppliers to their respective buyers and they have to continue with this momentum as challenges in global apparel trade like bankruptcies, buying closer to the season, smaller MOQ and tight costing, etc., will be there in 2021 also.|
|The Trend related sessions on ‘Future Consumer - Influence on Retail in 2021’ by Erick Smet, Senior Trend Analyst at TrendWatching, live from Amsterdam and WGSN's S/S ’22 Forecast for Men's, Women's and Kids by Puneet Dudeja, Sales Director - South Asia WGSN set the tone for the future with clear indications that the pandemic has left a long-term impact on the consumer and hence the fashion industry.|
|Addressing a Masterclass ‘New Directions in Sourcing’, Anindya Ray, EVP and Chief Sourcing Officer, Arvind Lifestyle Brands Limited stated that the apparel industry is at the brink of change and every stakeholder of the supply chain has to change accordingly; only then survival is possible in this business. He added that these changes may sound difficult and far-fetched, but will take place very soon – may be as soon as less than 1 year. He urged the industry to start preparation, if they had not already done so, as automated follow-up, digital roadshows, AI-driven costing, automated planning and replenishment will soon be the way to work.|
|The technology session on Speed to Market with Technology by Gunish Jain, CEO, BlueKaktus and the workshop on Brand- Supplier Partnership For Driving Supply-Chain Performance by Dr. Rajesh Bheda, CEO and Managing Director, Rajesh Bheda Consulting were well appreciated as they gave practical and real time solutions to existing concerns in manufacturing.|
|The attendees appreciated the live sessions and found them useful. Reacting to the Preferred Supplier session, Aristide Samuel, Director Find agencies, wrote, “It was a brilliant session, while Tanmay Anand, Partner, May Fashions, LLP added, “Great panel discussion at the ASW live session.” Most of the listeners felt that the sessions gave good insights and are already looking forward to the next line-up of sessions planned over the coming weeks. For those who missed the live session, register at ASW Marketplace to hear a recorded version of the various sessions.
Apparel Sourcing Week (ASW) platform is aligned to the changing dynamics of the industry, moving in pace with evolving and shifting world trade of apparel sourcing while also acknowledging the changing needs and wants of the customer.
To facilitate the seamless process of sourcing for greater transparency and reach, the ASW platform offers the industry three independent verticals – Big Show, Marketplace, and V-Expo – to enhance business opportunities for all players in the fashion retail chain, in an environment of networking, knowledge, and inspiration. With the three verticals, the supplier has marketing opportunities all around the year like never before, while the buyer has multiple avenues to search his perfect sourcing partner from South Asia.
Apparel Resources is well known for its benchmark publications – Apparel Online, StitchWorld and Resource Guide published from India, Bangladesh & Vietnam. These publications have been around in the industry for over 35 years, supporting, guiding and standing by garment exporters and the retail industry globally, providing them a platform to source better.