Footwear Exports in Vietnam Near the 5 Billion US Dollars

The leather and footwear sector's exports reached nearly 5 billion US dollars in the first five months of this year, up by 6% compared to similar period last year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
In May only, exports of leather and footwear products were valued at 1.15 billion US dollars, a year-on-year decrease of 0.6%, with production of leather footwear products in May declining by 6.2 %, reaching 19.3 million pairs.

What Are Your Input Costs?
FDRA's Footwear Commodities Report 

This report provides detailed analysis for footwear inputs and other costs impacting the footwear supply chain to help companies better track costs.  It includes oil, shipping, cotton, rubber, and other key data points related to footwear sourcing and production.

Go Inside the Workshop of the Custom-Sneaker King 
Never call Jacob Ferrato a cobbler. "A cobbler repairs shoes," he says bluntly. "I'm a cordwainer: somebody who makes shoes." Point taken. In the DIY sneaker world, where custom can mean anything from Sharpie swooshes to complex reconstructions, Ferrato offers a unique service: He dreams up new shoe designs and stitches them together from scratch. Like other top customizers, he made a name for himself doing Nike mashups and python-skin Jordans for hip hop dandies and NBA stars. Success, however, bred ennui. So he chucked the reconstruction racket for a while to focus on original silhouettes. Step inside Ferrato's atelier to see what cordwainery is about. 

The Evolution of the Panama Canal 
By Sara Mayes, President and CEO, Gemini Shippers Group

On June 26 th, the container vessel Andronikos operated by China COSCO Shipping will make the first transit through the expanded Panama Canal. The ship, with a maximum capacity of 9,400 TEU, will be almost twice as large as the largest ships currently able to transit the canal.
The expansion work on the canal started in September of 2007 and was slated to be completed by 2014 to roughly coincide with the canals 100 th anniversary, but construction delays and problems with the canals contractors delayed start the start of operations of the expanded canal until this summer.
FDRA Sourcing Summit 2016

125 sourcing execs. 100% focused on footwear sourcing, supply chain and social compliance issues. This is the 1 event you cannot miss if you work on these issues.

Impactiva: Process Optimization 
"It is not the strongest or the most intelligent of the species that survives, but the one that is most adaptable to change." Apparently Darwin didn't actually say this, but it is true all the same. Any Sourcing professional can tell how the rules of the game have changed, especially in the last decade or so.
The challenge is that the manufacturing and shipping infrastructure is already set up, and it takes a lot of time and a huge investment to move somewhere else. So these could be long term projects, but in the meantime, supply chains have to change and adapt, if they want to survive.
Process Optimization is of utmost importance, since it can help produce more with the same resources, lower costs by eliminating waste, shorten lead times and gain flexibility. It is the most effective way of making a supply chain meet the target of improving some key business capabilities.

Footwear Import Data (Total Volume and Price) 
With the government recently reporting new data, FDRA has produced its monthly Footwear Import Data Reports. 

After US footwear imports plunged year-over-year in March at the steepest rate in more than two decades, shipments rebounded modestly in April. At almost $1.7 billion, the value of footwear entering the US in the latest month expanded from March but still sank -7.3% year-over-year.  The volume of footwear imports fared likewise, expanding from March but sagging -7.5% from a year earlier to 175.3 million pair, the smallest April tally in fourteen years.  Following these tumbles, year-to-date imports now are off -6.1% in volume terms and off -5.6% in dollar terms from the same first four months of 2015.

America's four largest foreign suppliers all saw declines in this latest month, off a combined -8.3%.  But imports from the rest of the world fared little better, slipping a combined -0.4%.  Largest-supplier China again experienced the brunt of the losses, off -9.9% in April and -12.7% year-to-date.

While China remains--by far--the dominant supplier, its $ share of YTD US footwear imports in 2016 stands at just 58.8%, on track to recede to the lowest annual share in seventeen years.  At the same time, other key suppliers Vietnam, the DR, Cambodia, and India continue to enjoy year-over-year growth so far in 2016 and continue to take share from China again this year, an extension of the persistent trend.  In fact, note on the Total Footwear PDF that YTD rubber/fabric footwear from Vietnamese volume has now overtaken volume from China.

The -5.6% year-to-date decline in total footwear imports mentioned above is widespread across key categories.  In dollar terms, bootwear imports are off -9.8% and children's footwear imports are off -3.9%, while athletic footwear imports are up a modest 0.4%.  These declines contrast to the 3.4% growth in YTD shoe store sales, hinting that in coming months either imports may gain traction, sales growth may slow, or retail prices may firm a bit more as inventories presumably shrink.

Athletic Footwear Import Data 
Boot Import Data 
Children's Footwear Import Data 
The US Commercial Drone Industry is Finally Governed by Real Rules

"License and registration please. Do you know how fast you were going back there?"

In the near future, this may well apply to commercial drone operators just as much as car drivers. After years of deliberating, forming committees, and imposing stopgap measures, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has finally announced a set of regulations for commercial drones. These rules will affect anyone that wants to start a business using drones, from a one-man operation to take wedding photos from a drone, all the way up to big-box retailers like Amazon and Walmart that want to operate fleets of drones to deliver packages. Up until now, the FAA has issued special exemptions to people wanting to operate drones commercially-called Section 333 exemptions-and has issued a few thousand since setting up the system in 2012. Now, under the new rules-which the FAA says will take effect in August-anyone wishing to operate a drone commercially will be able to do so without explicit permission, but they will need to have obtained a license through FAA-approved tests first. 
WalMart to Test Grocery Delivery with Uber, Lyft
WalMart Stores Inc will partner with ride hailing services Uber and Lyft to trial online grocery deliveries, as it looks to speed up shipment times and better compete with rivals like Inc

The world's largest retailer said it would begin test deliveries within the next two weeks in Denver and Phoenix. WalMart's warehouse unit Sams Club began a pilot in March with startup Deliv to dispatch groceries to business customers in Miami.

Improving delivery times is seen as a way to appeal to busy inner-city workers who do not own cars and for whom grocery trips are often limited to what they can carry home. Amazon already operates Prime Fresh, a same-day "fresh produce and grocery" delivery service.

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