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Current trends impacting the retail sector

 

By Andrew Tananbaum

I recently sat down with Women’s Wear Daily’s Arthur Zaczkiewicz to discuss a variety of issues and challenges that importers and retailers are currently facing.

Below are a few highlights from our discussion:

Today, there are many factors impacting the entire retail supply chain. To start, there is a shift in the way retailers are buying goods, drastically shortening the lead time they provide to wholesales. This is resulting in the importers having to speculate or gamble on how much goods they need to produce overseas, which is increasing the need for supply chain finance.

Retailers continue to scramble to deal with changing consumer demands and shopping behaviors. For example, teens and their parents are spending less on clothes and more on electronics, causing the teen market to soften. Additionally, department stores are being forced to reinvent the in-store experience by shrinking their footprint, refocusing on the customer experience and reinventing merchandising strategies.

Additionally, the devalued yuan is having a positive development on the U.S retail supply chain. Thirty seven percent of importers indicated that due to lower costs associated with producing goods in China, margins will likely increase. However, some suppliers are still struggling and requiring deposits upfront. At CBC, we are seeing increased interest in companies seeking supply chain financing to ease financial strain.

Read the full interview here.