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Small but outstanding

1 All in the

You don´t need to be big to go international

family: Guilherme, Marcos and Octaviano

by the Fashion sector chamber of “Large chains demand personalized the official agency and the Think attendance. Our export director is Brazil Retail Solution in which Apex always traveling,” he added. works in partnership with the BraThe international demand is a zilian Retail Industry, Equipment prize resulting from the constant and Services Association (Abiesv). pursuit of innovation. When the The Andrade family took a more patriarch Vilemondes started prodaring step five years ago and set up duction in 1969, he had a French a showroom in Mexico City where partner who maintained a perma10 people work. They opened a sec- nent interchange with European

ond outlet in 2013 in Bogotá with four employees. They do not intend stopping there. “We plan to open a showroom in Chile this year,” Marcos revealed. The advance outposts abroad are also directed at smaller local retailers. However, the company does direct deals with the clients in bigger operations which are intermediated by its international sales team.


professionals in pursuit of up to also used to produce personalized date information on design and “dolls” with which the top model technologies. The partner left just Isabeli Fontana promoted a line of over 25 years ago but his example clothes sold under her brand in the remains the order of the day. “We C&A retail chain. introduced glass fiber products to Customizing to fit the client´s Brazil as soon as we began our pro- taste is also applicable to colors. duction. At that time, the competi- This was the case with a project tion only used plaster and wood as developed for a client in South Afbasic raw materials,” Marcos said. rica which was looking for products More recently, at the end of the with a black tone to please some of

3 Final touches: assembly line at the Avaré plant

start producing a line of this brand in Brazil,” he added. This exchange of ideas has been brought about by the spread of production abroad. Although some European and American firms are a respectable size, there is still no single multinational that is the international leader. This lack of an outright leader is also due to the

already number one in the area in Latin America. Its business is heading upwards and it expects revenues to expand by 5% this year, with a big boost from the international side. This is not only because of the heated demand but also because of an exchange rate that looks like fa-

Chinese omnipresence which is still highly focused on the question of price and pays no great attention to design - a factor that is one of Expor´s greatest triumphs. “We have two sculptors working full time and hire others when necessary. We also have a material research team and a products director.” Expor produced 70,000 items in 2013, has a workforce of 300 and is

voring exports. “In Mexico, for example, we expect to grow by 30%,” said Marcos who, in contrast to more than 20 years ago, now knows the secrets of the external market and no longer turns his nose up at it. “You need to know the client´s business, its needs and then provide it with a complete solution at a good cost which includes design and services.”



Pictures: HANDOUT


its consumers. However, diversification is far from being the rule. “Some chains like Tommy Hilfiger use larger mannequins in Europe and smaller ones in Asia while others use the same sizes in all markets,” Marcos said. The know-how developed at home attracted the interest of foreign competitors. At the beginning

last decade, Expor created the Emodels system with the help of third parties. This is a three-dimensional scanning process that allows the creation of “clones” with sizes and proportions that are absolutely identical to human beings. The method was used in standardized models for Latin American women, with bigger busts and hips. It was

2 Advanced post: Expor showroom in Bogotá

of the 1990s, the company formed an association with the Danish firm Hindsgaul, at that time one of the biggest in the world. It even ended up manufacturing and exporting items from this European partnership for which it paid royalties. In 2013, the Andrades became the Latin American representatives of the Dutch company Boodt, a highly regarded brand in the area. “We may


PIB ed25 english  

PIB Edition 25 March/April 2014

PIB ed25 english  

PIB Edition 25 March/April 2014