Apparel Buyers Like Full Service Concept
In June 2009, buyers for international brand name apparel importers and retailers expressed interest in a program to position the ASEAN region as a source for finished garments.
The 27 buyers were visiting Jakarta under the auspices of Cotton Council International (CCI) and attended a roundtable event co-hosted by USAID’s VALUE Project.
During the roundtable, the ASEAN Federation of Textile Industries (AFTEX) presented the Source ASEAN Full Service Alliance (SAFSA), a program to bring together textile mills and garment factories in ASEAN countries and position them as virtual vertical factories.
Formed around particular buyers, the factories would provide a full range of services—from concept sketches and materials sourcing to the finished product shipped to stores.
Representatives of major international brands—such as Ann Taylor, Benetton, Debenhams Group, Hanesbrands Japan, Jockey International, Marks and Spencer, Max Mara, Mitsubishi Corporation, S.Oliver, and VF Asia—shared their opinions about the program.
SAFSA will put ASEAN at the forefront of the global textile and apparel industry, certainly in terms of regional integration.
Mr. Rene Rodriguez, Jockey International
Many of the participating brands expressed interest in participating in SAFSA, either directly or through their existing ASEAN suppliers.
Noting that roundtable discussions were “open, frank, and insightful,” R.J. Gurley, head of the VALUE Project, said that buyers fully validated the SAFSA premise.
Buyer reaction to the SAFSA program has been overwhelming. AFTEX is grateful to USAID and VALUE for their invaluable role in making SAFSA possible.
Mr. Van Sou Ieng, AFTEX Chairman
VALUE has been helping AFTEX develop and refine the SAFSA concept since 2008.
The roundtable afforded AFTEX and VALUE their first serious opportunity to vet SAFSA with the major buyers who may figure prominently in the program.
I am confident SAFSA will position ASEAN as a premium source region for finished garments. But to stay ahead of global competitors, our innovative efforts must not end here.
Mr. Andrew Hong, Permanent Secretary General, AFTEX