Fourth edition of Bangladesh Denim Expo ended in the capital Dhaka on Tuesday with a call to make the denim sub-sector more sustainable using latest technology and fashion designs for attracting global buyers.

Organizers, visitors and buyers expressed their satisfaction with the expo, saying it will help creating a one-stop sourcing platform of the entire denim value chain. They also said the denim sub-sector of the apparel and clothing industry in Bangladesh is growing rapidly and it has huge prospect as renowned global brands and retailers are becoming interested in the Bangladeshi denim products due mainly to price competitiveness.

“Bangladesh has already emerged as a major hub for sourcing denim products for international retailers and brands for its competitive pricing,” Yilmaz Demir, account manager of Orta Anadolu, an oldest denim producer of the world, told the SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL.

Mr. Demir sees that Bangladesh to become number one denim exporter shortly if the existing trend continues. Bangladesh as the second largest contributor to the European Union (EU) denim market shipped the products particular jeans to the region worth Euro 932.86 million in 2014 marking a 15.53 per cent growth, according to the organizers.

Bangladesh Denim Expo
Bangladesh Denim Expo

Exports of Bangladeshi-made denim products reached euro 1.07 billion to the EU during January to November of 2015, showing a 25.35 per cent growth compared to the same period of 2014, they added. On the other hand, Bangladesh is the third largest denim exporter to the United States, after Mexico and China, with an 11.3 per cent market share, according to the US Department of Commerce.

Bangladesh exported $418.42 million worth of denim products to the US in 2014. Bangladesh has a 22.88 per cent market share of denim in the EU. Talking to the SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL, Amy Leverton, designer and denim trend analyst, said Bangladesh will have to go high-end products gradually from the existing level using latest technology and designs.

Trend analysis is vital in the appeal and clothing business as retailers and brands go for new designs and place work orders in bulk, based on the analysis, Leverton, who also wrote the widely sold book 'Denim Dudes', explained.

“Local denim makers should develop expertise on trends for further expansion their businesses particularly in the USA and EU,” she noted. For the first time, a specially-designed trend zone at the expo showed the latest evolutions and innovative trends that will rule the denim world for the next seasons.

Besides, the expo ground was decorated fully with jute to promote the once ‘golden fiber’ of Bangladesh to the world along with the ‘Made in Bangladesh’ denim. A total of 49 companies, 37 foreign and 12 local, displayed their products and services in the two-day long exhibition.

A good number of entrepreneurs, businessmen, fashion professionals and stakeholders from Europe and the Unites States also attended the expo, exploring especially the business-to-business (B2B) opportunities.

A total of three seminars and a panel discussion were also held at Bashundhara Convention City in the capital Dhaka for further sustainable development of denim sector.

Denim seminar at Bangladesh Denim Expo
Denim seminar at Bangladesh Denim Expo

“The response from the manufacturers, retailers and brands is so high that the stalls for the next two expositions have already been sold out,” Mostafiz Uddin, founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of Bangladesh Denim Expo, told the SPORTSWEAR INTERNATIONAL while replying to a query.

Mr. Mostafiz, also managing director of Denim Expert Limited, said Bangladesh Denim Expo is working to bring people, products and ideas together to stimulate denim industry. “Our passion is to understand denim, think denim and believing in denim.”

The Denim Expert Limited, a Bangladesh-Netherlands joint venture operating from Chittagong-based Karnaphuli Export Processing Zone, supplies its BlueXonly brand products to boutiques in different European countries, including the Netherlands, Belgium, Hungary and Italy.

The fifth denim expo will be held in the same venue in the capital on November 8-9 this year, the founder of Bangladesh Denim announced.

“We’re also going to organize the first edition of Bangladesh Green Apparel and Textile Expo on February 25-26, 2017 aiming to facilitate the green momentum in the apparel and clothing industry of Bangladesh,” Mr. Mostafiz noted. “We foresee Bangladesh can proudly take the leadership of green garmenting in the whole world.”

Bangladesh Denim Expo: hall view
Bangladesh Denim Expo: hall view