Ukraine apparel industry production potential
Famous clothes manufacturers are highly interested in the technologically developed apparel industry of Ukraine. They assess it as an alternative to the “far” production resource of China, or the too-expensive labour in “Old Europe”
Proof of this is growth of business activity in 2016. According to statistics, almost 65 percent of new orders for clothes production are from abroad. Export of finished products increased by 8 % and reached USD 719.1 million. Foreign direct investment reached USD 1.5 million. At the current pace, local business representatives expect further placement of big orders from foreign companies at garment enterprises in 2017 and subsequent years.
Ukrainian clothes manufacturers are more flexible in terms of supply offer, with the same production technology and higher product quality than China, Vietnam, Poland, Romania or Bulgaria.
“If the garments are shipped in Friday from Ukraine, then on Monday they are released by customs in Europe,” they say at factories. Within a few days, clothes move from sewing factories in Ukraine to the malls or boutiques of any European Union country. Understanding logistical advantages, quality and competitive pricing, European clothes brands are planning to increase the volume of orders for certain types of products. First of all these are exclusive products and clothes collections.
The example of Skvyrateks company is an illustration of fashion brands moving towards cooperation with Ukrainian producers. One of the oldest enterprises in the industry, which started work in the early 1940s, Skvyrateks has received new impulses for development because of new investment. Today, it is moving towards an increase in production volumes and an expansion of product range. After a complete modernization of production, including equipment of the production lines with multifunctional sewing and knitting machines, foreign customers became interested in the possibilities of this factory.
“We finished complete production modernization in 2014, but still continue to expand the park of new equipment. This year we purchased JUKI eye buttonhole machine and hand-stitching effect machine. The company installed ironing tables and Italian production irons, bar tack machines, overlocks and new universal sewing machines with a digital program control that has the best energy efficiency and performance. Seamstresses can do more transactions in less time. It gave a chance to increase production volume this year. Only in November, we have produced more than 9000 units out of which 8000 are coats and jackets for women,” Liudmyla Semko, the director of Skvyrateks LLC, said.
During 2015-2016, the factory produced more than 200 models of clothes for nine international clothes brands from Germany, France, Belgium and Latvia.
“During third and fourth trimester of this year we worked with mainly four brands. It is about 10 to 20 new clothes models monthly. Currently we produce for a Belgium collection of coats for women in spring 2017”, Semko said.
The customer wants to be sure of product quality while opening possibilities of new production capacity, together with the need to reduce costs.
“Our production was certified by Bureau Veritas Quality International for compliance with international quality standards, organization and work protection. The company implemented quality management system ISO 9001-2001. In addition, we have combined system of control and quality evaluation. On the one hand it is internal control in between operations of more than 40 operations and parameters of compliance towards approved product sample and standard documentation. On the other hand it is a control of finished products by a customer’s technical person. Sometimes it may be the whole order control,” Liudmyla Semko said.
Customers think that strict quality control is necessary, even with modern equipment and skilled professionals. The possibility of free access to production is important to establish trusting relationship.
“With Skvyrateks company, we have been working for many years and are satisfied with our cooperation: high quality, timely deliveries of finished products, competent management and a willingness to carry out urgent orders. The enterprise fulfilled for us orders of such German companies, as Walker, Manisa, Bonita. We hope that in future our cooperation will continue,” Johann Garder, the director of Company Hajohn-International OHG, said.
Skvyrateks LLC is part of OLTEKS (www.olteks.com) production association, which operates in the apparel industry market since 1995 and is specialized in sewed products manufacturing.
The company includes two apparel factories with more than 500 employees. For 20 years, OLTEKS has been a reliable partner in providing uniform for ministries and departments (Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Interior Ministry of Ukraine, National Guard of Ukraine, National Police of Ukraine, State Border Service of Ukraine and others), and in providing special clothes to leading national mechanical engineering, infrastructure and telecommunications companies.
OLTEKS LLC is an export-oriented company. Recognition of its high production quality comes after more than 15 years of successful work experience with well-known companies in the Western Europe market.