What is the situation of the footwear supply chain?



Despite the fact that the luxury world forecasts a turnover that could exceed 400 billion euros by 2025 and 500 billion by 2028, with a medium-term growth of 7-8 percent due mainly to an increase in international tourism, it is no secret that the supply chain is in great difficulty. From a survey conducted by CNA Federmoda, on a sample of nearly 600 companies, more than 50 percent estimate a contraction in turnover in 2024: among them, one in five even indicates a sharp reduction in revenues, more than 20 percent.


What is the situation of the footwear supply chain?
“A survey conducted among our associates shows that the sentiment of footwear manufacturers is marked by pessimism,” reveals Giovanna Ceolini, President of Assocalzaturifici. “More than 54% of the sample fears to close the first half of the year with a drop in turnover compared to the first half 2023. It will be necessary to wait until the second half of the year if not, more likely, at least 2025 for a significant restart of the economy of the entire sector.”


Export: which countries are growing and which are declining?
“In first place is France (+17.3% in value and +1.1% in quantity on January-October 2022), whose figures also include the return flows of production carried out in Italy by French luxury multinationals. In sharp decline (-24.6% in value and -33.3% in pairs), on the other hand, Switzerland, the traditional logistical hub of the designer labels, likely affected by a change in their distribution strategies (which have been shipping a substantial part of the goods sold directly to the end markets, without transiting through Swiss warehouses). The U.S. and Germany suffered drastic setbacks in the second half of the year (in the order of -25 percent in volume in the July-October four-month period), registering in the first 10 months declines of about -20 percent in pairs (and -7.8 percent and -2.3 percent respectively in value),” Ceolini continues. “Reinforced also by lower transits in Switzerland, direct flows from Italy to the Far East grew by +15.6% in value and +7.4% in quantity (with China +12.4% in value, Hong Kong +16.5%, Japan +18.7% and South Korea with a moderate +2.8%, the only negative in volume). This area is confirmed as the one with the highest average prices, precisely because of the decisive role played by designer labels. The United Arab Emirates also did well (+30% in value and +8.9% in pairs). Russia (+36.8 percent in value) and Ukraine (+79 percent) experienced-after the 2022 slump caused by the beginning of the conflict-a significant rebound, although they still remain below 2021 pre-war levels.”


What should the state do?
“We call on the government to adopt an emergency measure that, albeit in compliance with European regulations, allows the repayment time of loans guaranteed by SACE and Simest to be lengthened so that the repayment horizon is raised, for companies in our sector that have been forced to resort to them, from 6 to 10 years. The government should promote the opening of a working table with the banking system aimed at granting an extraordinary suspension on overdraft credit lines, financing for advances on loans and loan installments, and financing in general for companies that request it. Including ABI's position with respect to the automatic reporting in the Central Risk Register resulting from the rescheduling of repayment terms, it would need to be verified whether it would be possible to postpone the repayment of only the principal installments of loans.”


What about businesses?
“Press the accelerator on the digitalization and internationalization front.”

Read the other news of May 2024