1 April 2023

Table of Content

Topic 1:

SAFLEC Executive Director Nerisha Jairaj attended the ShoesStar Exhibition in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in April, and was invited by the Footwear Association in Uzbekistan to be part of a panel discussion on ‘how to penetrate the global market in exports’. 

She was asked because South Africa, like Uzbekistan, has a small industry competing against global giants, yet despite that, has managed to make a name for itself through consistent promotion.

She stressed the importance of digital platforms during covid, but said the most important strategy was to aim for long term results.

“For a variety of reasons, we can’t compare ourselves to a country like Turkey,” she said, “but we can benchmark and learn from them.”

She also spoke on issues such as over-stocked retailers, the difference between some markets where sustainability is a key factor and others where the demand is for ‘bling’, and the growth in demand for both luxury- and budget product.

“I don’t think anyone has all the answers right now,” she said. “We will all have to do our own PESTEL analyses to come up with answers which suit what we can offer.”

Topic 2:


24 attendees at the Durban one-week workshop enjoyed the benefits of our Italian experts, Orietta Pelizzari and Stefano Migliavacca, learning about Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter 2024/2025 trends. 

The Durban workshop is a joint collaborative sponsorship between SAFLIA, SAFLEC and EFLC, and would not be possible without SAFLIA’s financial sponsorship.

Arsutoria also donates a scholarship to a course in Italy, which this year was awarded to Anushka Bissonram of Africa Soul Footwear.


Topic 3:

A drive towards new membership went into full swing this past month, with a meet and greet with potential new members being held in Cape Town at the WESGRO one stop shop. The City of Cape Town, WESGRO, Crafts and Design Institute, Fashion Revolution (Cyril Naidoo), the Watershed SME division and SAFLEC board members in Cape Town, all worked together to invite companies that were within the sector to attend our meet and greet, and allow SAFLEC to market what we have been doing and what we could do for new members.  An attendance of 30-plus new companies really took us by surprise, and we are looking forward to signing up those new members.

Topic 4:

Michael Jordan’s sneakers sold for a record 2.2 million USD
May 1, 2023 / 
The pair of sneakers worn by the athlete in the 1998 NBA Finals was sold last month for 2.2 million USD, setting a new world record for the most expensive pair of shoes ever purchased.

Bangladesh: leather exports register a small growth
Apr 28, 2023 /  
From July to March 2023, Bangladeshi’s total leather exports increased only by 2.56% year-over-year, reflecting a deceleration in the category exports since the start of the year.

Topic 5:
Let’s Hear What Our Members Have To Say!

“Many thanks to the Saflec team and SAFLIA. Arsutoria was very beneficial to all manufacturers regarding designs and latest fashion concepts. They showed us how we need to look ahead towards fashion, brand marketing and how fashion is displayed using ideas and concepts from all industries like automotive (Mercedes Benz and BMW in collaboration with Puma for footwear and clothing). Thank you for the opportunity to learn and experience thru Saflec ‘s programs. Saflec has been making great efforts to assist and educate its members. We need to explore and manufacture different types of footwear products. As for myself I am still very passionate about ladies ABS heels which used to be the component running in every shoe factory. Due to financial constraints, I am unable to offer better service and printed heel effects.”

Shaun Moodley

BM Agencies
“Well done on a great seminar. It was well presented, very detailed and beneficial to the industry. To the Saflec, SAFLIA and EFLC team, great job. Keep up the good work.”

Viren Gopee

“Effort is key! I have been longing to learn in Arsutoria since I was 16 years old. My hard work and prayers have paid off for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I have attended Arsutoria Workshop for 2 years in a row and am grateful to Orietta, Stefano and the SAFLEC team for inspiring me. A huge thank you to SAFLEC, EFLC and SAFLIA for making this possible. Grazie!”

Anushka Bissonram

Africa Soul Footwear
“Just want to thank you for an exceptional 2 days of presentations. Since I am new to the leather business this is the first time I have been exposed to the work that SAFLEC has done / is doing. It is super impressive, and I look forward to working together in future to grow our presence internationally.”


FSP Collection

Topic 6:
Social Media

Our social media platforms have been hitting record-breaking hits. Our recent campaign obtained over 14,800,000 impressions and over 540,000 engagements, boosted to followers in the rest of Africa, Europe, Middle East, and North America. We encourage you to take advantage of our efforts to promote you. Send us content to push your company and brands. Also like, follow, and forward our links to your contact lists. Let us build the following globally so that we can show the world our capability.

Instagram: @saflec_team
Youtube: SAFLEC 

Topic 7:
Upcoming Events

Export Training – May/June 2023

New York trade Show – 6-8 June 2023

Busan Design Week – 22-25 June 2023

Leather World Paris – 3-5 July 2023