Overview of ReShoring Fashion Initiative:
The objective of the ReShoring Fashion Initiative is to provide shorter, faster, adaptable apparel supply chains to American Brands and Retailers that can deliver measurable profits by improved sales at full cost, reduced markdown losses, higher valued fashion and overall reduced risk of inventory associated with longer import supply chains. This new modern factory model is not intended to replace current global sourcing methodologies in place but to coexist with them and to strategically augment them when and where appropriate. The initiative includes creating a model that is both scalable and repeatable.
[TC]2 is seeking funding to prove the viability of this modern factory as a model that incorporates best practices in manufacturing and management. This proposed Lean factory model includes 60-150 highly cross-trained workers. The full whitepaper on this initiative is available by request.
On March 16th 2015 [TC]2 hosted a meeting to discuss this initiative. We were pleased to welcome attendees from throughout the apparel supply chain, including representatives from brands & retailers, cut and sew manufacturers, and fabric and yarn producers. The following is a recap of some of the discussion points and key takeaways. We encourage your input and support of this very important initiative.
Key Discussion Points:
- The question was raised whether the model factory is designed to be a brand owned facility or will serve as a contract facility. The intent is that the model is flexible enough to accommodate numerous ownership scenarios.
- Balancing production “demand peaks” with similar product categories during “off-peak” times was discussed.
- There was significant dialog regarding the right product categories for the modern factory model startup.
- The group also discussed the importance of domestic supply chain considerations.
- The issue regarding availability of labor for staffing the factory model was addressed.
- The importance and relevance of [TC]2’s factory/product costing model and sourcing strategy software was validated. It was confirmed that these decision-making tools can provide valuable data when evaluating the cost effectiveness of a domestic sourcing strategy versus a global one.
- Nearshoring was also a topic of discussion as was its role in developing a holistic sourcing strategy.
- Opportunities for grant funding within the state of N.C. were presented.
- The importance of adopting automation, digital solutions, digital fabric printing as well as 3D printing technologies was agreed upon.
- Using an existing factory in the U.S. as a proof of concept was discussed.
- The overall mission of the initiative regarding job creation versus a sound business solution was addressed. All were in agreement that this model must be based on improved financial performance with job creation as a byproduct.