- Ecuador takes part in the Tradeshow with the biggest delegation, with a total of 178 buyers coming from this country.
- United States-based companies look for off-shore manufacturers and trims and fittings here, driven by the benefits of the Free Trade Agreement in force with Colombia.
- Between this Wednesday and this Thursday, a business conference surrounding the Fashion System will be held, led by ProColombia with the support of Medellin Mayor’s Office and Inexmoda.
January 2017. The high quality of the Colombian production paired with the competitive prices in relation to the production of other countries, as well as the proximity of the markets, the opportunity for deliveries, and the benefits offered by the free trade agreements with Colombia, are some of the positive aspects that the international buyers keep in mind when doing business within the framework of Colombiatex de las Americas, trading platform carried out in Plaza Mayor Medellin from January 24th to the 26th.
In this textile event, of trims and fittings and machinery and equipment for the industry, 1,800 international buyers from 60 different countries participate; 600 of these buyers from 325 companies based on 16 different countries came at the special invitation from ProColombia. According to data collected by this official institution, 141 of them, meaning 43% of the total, attend for the first time.
There are 41 buyers coming from the United States, and on 2016 edition of the Tradeshow, the attendants from that country made effective purchases for US$1.4 million, number expected to increase significantly this year. The company In-sattva is one of them: they came to the Tradeshow with the purpose of buying underwear and women clothing in several lines in mind, especially because of the proximity with the American market, which facilitates on-time deliveries and the same assurances in customs treatment that Colombian products have within the free trade agreement signed by both countries.
Another American company, Target, one of the biggest department store chains in that country, comes for the first time to Colombiatex looking for full package, productive possibilities in casual wear for men and women. The same as Adidas and other important global brands, they are considered ‘VIP Buyers’ and they have a separate agenda with some national companies.
Brendan Pape, president of the American company Brist Manufacturing (established in the State of Oregon, is one of the biggest department stores with the biggest areas of its country), not only highlights the quality of the Colombian production, but to the hospitality and cordiality of its people, also key elements when doing business.
«I came here looking for companies that adjust to our business model in the category of full package, casual wear for men and for women and that are also flexible on the amounts of production, without pre-established minima, amounts of mandatory compliance in Asian countries, » the manager observed. The quality of the fabrics, the benefits of the FTA with Colombia, and the transparency with which business with Colombian companies are being closed (another differentiating aspect from Asian countries), are also elements that he keep in mind to buy in the country.
The chain Almacenes García,of México, which has 175 stores in that country, also takes part as a buyer in this textile event, to which they came looking to buy outerwear for women, men and children (jeans, bathing suits, and underwear, among other categories).
Jose Mizrahy, buyer for that company, agreed with other buyers in the fact that the quality of the Colombian production is defining factor come to the Tradeshow in the search for options of full package. «The quality – ‘the workmanship’ – of the Colombian production is well-known, it is the reason to come to buy here, » he stated, while taking care of several appointments in the Business Conference of the Fashion System.
And from Brazil, the company Alpargatas came for the first time to Colombiatex de las Americas to look for full package in sportswear and casual wear for its markets and for its 21 stores in Brazil (company-owned and franchised.) Juliana Boccia, buyer for that company (that displays brands such as Havaianas and Mizuno – the latter of sportswear -), will complete more than 30 appointments in this round mediated by ProColombia.
«I have appointments with very good companies and with the products that we are looking for… it is my first time in this Tradeshow and I am delighted by people’s warmth, with all the courtesies we have received, and with the services provided by Inexmoda and Procolombia”, she assured.
The proximity with Colombia is what allows for the companies from Ecuador to visit and to buy in Colombiatex de las Americas. This country arrived with the most numerous delegation of buyers (178 entrepreneurs) and in the 2016 edition of the Tradeshow, they made purchases for US$5.6 million, becoming the country that bought the most in that opportunity.
Santiago Vasconez, of the company Metro Distribuciones from the neighboring country, came to buy fabrics for furniture, curtains, decorative fabric and house furnishing. «We loved the Tradeshow and we have seen that everything is running smoothly, there is good supply for our clients, » he sustained. In fact, the Colombian company Textiles Uno por Uno is one of its suppliers, but it is looking to expand these possibilities and to incorporate more products to its briefcase.
Gustavo Barrientos, of the company Gub International Business, with headquarters in Ontario (Canada) participated in the Tradeshow for the first, summoned by Inexmoda on its twentieth ninth edition. They came looking for menswear and women clothing in general (in several categories) and home furnishing, especially sheets and linen in general.
«The most important thing has been the prices that I have found, very competitive compared to the supply of other countries, because I already know about the high quality standards, » said the entrepreneur. «In our country, —he stated—, the supply of Asian products at low prices is extensive, but not of good quality, and that is what makes you different and recognizable to your clients. »
In general, according to data collected by Procolombia, Colombian textile and apparel reach to over 47 countries (Ecuador, Mexico, United States and Peru are the main destinations) and in 2016, remarkably, four countries made their first purchases to the entrepreneurs in the industry. They were: India (123,560 dollars), Bangladesh (43,564 dollars), Uganda (14,300 dollars), and Aruba (38,895 dollars).
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