TFG – a leading South African fashion retailer – is aiming for producing 30 million pieces of clothing a year within four years domestically.
The retailer is turning away from global supply chains in a bid to avoid delays as well as the cyber-attack at freight logistics operator Transnet that brought local ports and rail to a standstill.
The owner of British womenswear brands Hobbs and Whistles and the local Foschini clothing brand has fared better than its competitors as it has been bringing production closer to home over the past five years by expanding its own factories and buying new ones.
It’s worth noting here that TFG sources 72 per cent of its clothes from domestic manufacturers, while offshoring accounts for just 28 per cent that was 40 per cent till 5 years ago.
“All of these quick response advantages were clearly important in the past but never more relevant than now,” commented Anthony Thunström, CEO, TFG, citing disruption in Far East supply chains and shipping rates up 400 per cent from a year ago.
The apparel, homeware and jewellery retailer is now planning to invest a further R 575 million (US $ 37.55 million) over the next three to five years to build local manufacturing capability.