1 May 2023

Table of Content

Topic 1:

Made in South Africa is slowly becoming a footwear and leather goods label for consumers globally, promoted by Proudly SA on the local front and SAFLEC in the global arena. In May, Proudly South African, in collaboration with Trade and Investment Kwa-Zulu Natal (TIKZN), held a multi-sectoral workshop for local manufacturers. Nerisha Jairaj of SAFLEC spoke about access to international markets and SAFLEC’s support for the leather sector.

Collaboration is key during these trying times. Every effort is being made by collaborative stakeholders to push the “Made in SA Agenda.” The event was attended by over 50 local manufactures.

Topic 2:

Facilitator: Trevor Michael of Clearline Consulting

SAFLEC and EFLC held an export training webinar facilitated by Trevor Michael of Clearline Consulting on 25th May which was attended by 23 members.

Trevor covered:

  • Introduction: An Exporters Tale
  • Cost Considerations
  • Overview of Export Activity
  • Export Financing: Don’t let it scare you!
  • Types of Financing options
  • Trade Cost Realities
  • Cost Reduction Strategies

These topics enabled the audience to understand exports and learn about the dos and don’ts with the added benefit of access to funding and cost realities. If you missed out contact us for a recording of the webinar. SAFLEC always encourages its members to learn more about how to export.

Topic 3:

SAFLEC and EFLC met with Botswana representatives from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ), which has a wide mandate “dedicated to shaping a future worth living around the world”, and which is a “service provider in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development and international education work in a wide variety of areas, including economic development and employment promotion, energy and the environment, and peace and security”. Whew!

At SAFLEC’s request, GIZ is considering developing a programme to assist Southern African Customs Union (SACU) exporters to start at the end of 2023.

Watch this space for more updates!!!!

From left: Prenisha (SAFLEC), Sefalana Lobelo (GIZ Botswana), Klaus Heinze (GIZ Botswana) & Beni Letebele (Gherzi Textile Organization) 

Topic 4:

SAFLEC and EFLC attended the launch of the first Induction for SMMEs in Textile and Leather Incubation Programme. Held on 31st May at the DUT Fashion Department in Overport and hosted by Gnanam Pillay (Poppet), CEO of the Durban Textile and Leather Incubator (DTLI). In attendance were industry stakeholders such as SEDA, SEFA KZN EDTEA, FP&M Seta eThekwini, DUT, etc. 57 SMMEs have committed to this incubation programme. SAFLEC and EFLC are glad to be working in collaboration with DTLI. 

Topic 5:

Germany Retail: a bleak horizon for both the physical and online retail
June 12, 2023, World Footwear Reports

Consumers seem to have definitely pulled the rug out from under footwear companies, as can be seen by the wave of insolvencies observed in the footwear sector in recent months, in addition to the store closures recorded in 2022. And the online channel is having no better luck, with sales progressively losing the momentum of the positive results recorded in the summer of last year. Overall, the future of retail looks set to remain a little gloomier in the coming months.

Topic 6:

“Many thanks to SAFLEC & EFLC for their generosity toward investing into Corvari footwear. I found this training very beneficial; it allowed me to be informed into ways of making bags and wallets as well as teaching the basic principles of making a pattern. This opportunity has equipped us to be able to think in a new way going forward, being able to apply different techniques and ways to work with leather in a way we haven’t been able to before. As a company we will now be able to diversify into the handbag/ accessories market and be able to work up our offcuts as well as being able to upskill some of our staff in the process. As for the lady who offered her expertise, made the learning interesting, Loretta, she is a great teacher and takes the utmost pride in her work and efforts. She was extremely hospitable and forthcoming in her efforts, a true teacher at heart. I am truly grateful for this opportunity and will definitely make great advancements with this knowledge gained.”

Danielle van der Westhuizen

Corvari footwear
“For the companies’ young, developing designers who want to expand their design knowledge and make leather bags and belts especially exotic leather bags, SAFLEC organized an educational tour. The program for SAFLEC was run by Loretta, a skilled woman. She has worked in the bag manufacturing sector for more than 40 years and has created high-end purses for prominent American celebrities, such as Whitney Houston. We had a chance to comprehend some of the lessons, including how to make a wallet and a postman’s bag, how to prepare ostrich leather, and how to make patterns, we felt that the program’s 2-week duration was insufficient. Since the wallet is a little trickier than the postman’s bag, we were recommended to work on it frequently after a project went well. In order to help our business by raising the calibre of the wallets and bags we are manufacturing from the offcuts; I would need an hour to spend honing the skills Loretta taught me. Our next objective is to introduce fashionable offcut bags and designer leader bags to the bag business.”

Sibonelo Zwane

NDSS Trading
Item made by Danielle (Corvari Footwear) on the handbag course.
Sibonelo (NDSS Trading) working with Ostrich Leather

Topic 7:
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 8:
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