Steady as you go
Day two of the 2018 ACLE may have started slowly but soon got busy before lunch; perhaps the delay was a consequence of the excellent anniversary dinner. For there is no doubt that the fair is overall busier and more active than had been expected by many as they set out for Shanghai.
This does not make for a fast improving state of trade, although there is some real evidence of a limited upturn, demonstrated and driven by a small uplift in prices, general global economic improvement, and the end to the environmentally provoked tannery reorganisation in parts of China.
Given all this most companies talk about trade being level and consider that a success, the main fear bring that buyers might be willing to reduce their standards to buy a few cents a foot cheaper. It is hard to think they would risk their reputation for such small sums but this is the sad reality in some cases.
Underlying this remains a deep concern for market share in the footwear, garment and automobile trade where the leather industry clearly is learning that while sustainability becomes a given it no longer drives sales, and real innovation is now demanded with constant and determined new offerings.
This was clearly demonstrated when Fernando Bellese presented the new communications programme in the Leather Naturally Zone. “It is global; it is digital; it is to talk to Gen Y and Gen Z; it is to reconnect them with leather”. We are not going to emphasise the by product, oppose the plastics all the time. We are going to make leather cool again.
It seemed to resonate with the big audience, although it was short of Chinese tanners, and hopefully the industry will combine to provide the funds required to make it happen. It is long overdue, and could be transformative for our worldwide industry.
- Mike Redwood, Leather Naturally Spokesperson
Vietnam delegations satisfied with their first visit at ACLE
President of Hanoi Shoes Leather Association and Director of one of Vietnam’s largest shoes manufacturer visited ACLE for the first time this year to find machinery, equipment and material for the new factory the company is building in Hung Yen, Hanoi’s newest industrial area. The plant which will span 50,000 sqm, will feature 10 different production lines and will host 2000 workers in order to meet the growing demand for shoe production in Vietnam. He said he was impressed by the sheer size of the ACLE fair, its safe and secure environment and the support that was provided by the organisation. “I made valuable contacts and met potential suppliers to equip our future factory.”