Clothing Manufacturing Overseas

Overview

When you have a clothing line, and you start considering manufacturing overseas it could be quite an exciting, but challenging enterprise. You have to weigh in the pros and cons, and then decide if you want to take another step and start making business with the factories overseas. We will give you detailed pros and cons of the clothing manufacturing overseas, and why Albania is a very good opportunity for foreign investors from overseas and those from Europe to manufacture there.

Clothing manufacturing overseas

Advantages

1. High volume – the clothing manufacturing factories overseas, usually produce a high volume of units. It could be 600-800 pieces per style or more, per complete custom work. If you are lucky you might get a lesser amount of units, but every factory is different and it varies from country to country.

2. Machinery and technology– producing clothing in European factories, comes with benefits as they have a well-developed industry, with the latest technology and machinery resulting in a high-quality product at the end.

3. Skilled labor– employees working in the clothing manufacturing companies spread throughout Europe are either skilled labor or specialists who have been working for many years (even decades) in the business, particularly in the craft areas and tailoring. Italy is the biggest producer of apparel and accessories in Europe, where the best designers and some of the most luxurious brands come from.

Disadvantages

sewing machine

1. Hire an agent– If you don’t have strong contacts and are unfamiliar dealing with the overseas factories, you might need to hire an intermediary or agent, who is an expert of connecting the designer or investor with the manufacturer. Also, if there are communication barriers, having an agent makes it easier as it avoids the misunderstandings that might arise in the process and saves time over the long run.

2. Logistics– Shipping time for manufacturing overseas might take several weeks and in worst case scenario, the products or garments could be stuck in the customs border and thus being delayed, costing money on both sides of the pond.

3. Costs– Cost of labor is higher in Europe in general, with few exceptions in some countries (like Albania i.e. and we will explain why). Add here the currency fluctuations, delivery, and insurance costs. Lastly, consider as well the time zones, as it would be inappropriate to contact the manufacturer when the factory is closed.

Albania, as a potential country to manufacture overseas

The apparel and footwear industry constitutes one-third of all total Albanian exports. One of these clothing companies manufacturers for the famous Italian fashion house “Max Mara”.
Albania seems is on the agenda of many international clothing manufacturing and trading companies. Many foreign entrepreneurs choose to invest in Albania, contributing to the country’s economic development.

Woman working in a clothing factory in Albania
An Albanian clothing manufacturing factory

Michele Brizzi, Italian investor behind “Max Mara” says the reasons why he chose Albania: “I have heard a lot of times that Albania offers a favorable environment for investment. Some of my friends suggested to me and I decided to come to Albania. When you commit to investing, you take into account the risk also. In fact, we are a company that wants to employ labor force up to 800 individuals”.

During a visit at a usual work day, what you can notice is the nice-looking facility, with all the necessary tools, the treatment of employees with respect and dignity, regular contracts, vacation paid three times during the year, and most of all the satisfactory salary.

The employees get paid depending on how many hours they work. The wages there start from €1.3/hour going up, in proportion with the work process. The salary is from €300-500. The labor force comes from the cities of Kavaja, Lushnja, Durresi, Peqini, Rrogozhina, etc. and the commute for them is for free.

Source/ Crowdspring, A.T.SH.

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