Thailand’s COTTON USA Design Challenge Winners Attend U.S. Cotton Education Tour
COTTON USA hosted the winner, first and second runner-ups on an educational tour of California and New York. Because this year's design challenge was "Hollywood Inspired," the winners visited Hollywood, as well as cotton farms and a gin in the San Joaquin Valley. For the second part of the tour, the winners attended the Supima Design Competition at New York Fashion Week and visited Cotton Incorporated's consumer marketing headquarters in New York. Two television programs, iTeen and Chic Channel, traveled with the winners and captured their experiences. The TV shows will feature U.S. cotton, the Supima Design Competition, and Cotton Incorporated's color trend forecast for Fall/Winter 2012-2013. The expected earned advertising value from the tour is $650,000.
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COTTON USA Buyers Tour to Southeast Asia Successfully Concludes in Thailand
Twenty-seven global buyers and retailers from the U.S., and six countries in Europe and Asia joined CCI's COTTON USA Supply Chain Marketing Buyers Tour to Southeast Asia held in Bangkok, Thailand. The group met with U.S. cotton textile and apparel suppliers from across Southeast Asia.
To provide sourcing options for the brands and retailers, 39 COTTON USA licensed suppliers with production facilities in five countries across Southeast Asia traveled to CCI's private trade fair in Bangkok where they promoted their U.S. cotton-rich fabrics and garments.
The Buyers Tour incorporated a briefing session explaining the benefits of sourcing from Thailand and the ASEAN region, a two-day trade fair and tours to fabric and garment manufacturing facilities located on the outskirts of Bangkok. Cotton Incorporated also supported the event with recruitment of participants and a presentation of their recent knit and woven product developments.
The event provided opportunities for overseas buyers to meet the entire supply chain in one location. Suppliers of cotton yarn, knit fabrics and apparel and woven fabrics and apparel suppliers from across the ASEAN region gathered at the CCI event to streamline the sourcing process and reinforce long-term business for retailers, manufacturers and the cotton industry alike. Mills and manufacturers in the ASEAN region are taking proactive steps to cooperate and form alliances to serve the needs of the apparel buyer who buys fabrics or finished garments. This cooperation gives ASEAN suppliers a stronger competitive position than they had previously.
Suppliers at the trade fair indicated that the COTTON USA Buyers Tour provided a platform for them to meet new buyers from overseas markets and helped to enhance their business relationships with existing customers. Most participants expressed their confidence that contacts made during the trip would lead to developing business ties and consequently increase sales of U.S. cotton.
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COTTON USA Licensee Wrangler Launches “Water Repellent Denim” in Thailand
Wrangler produced 10,000 pairs of men's and women's jeans based on Cotton Incorporated's Storm DenimTM technology. The U.S. cotton-rich jeans are sold at more than 90 department stores nationwide in Thailand. Thai consumers have responded positively to the “Water Repellent Denim” line. As of July 2011, the 10,000 pairs of jeans launched in March 2011 are nearly sold out, with only 10 percent remaining. Wrangler plans to keep its "Water Repellent Denim" as a mainstay item. Last year, Wrangler labeled about 730,000 100 percent cotton products with the COTTON USA Mark in Thailand.
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COTTON USA and John Henry Debut 2010 John Henry Winter Collection in Thailand
John Henry, a modern menswear brand, launched their new collection, focusing on "Modern Fit" shirts, to change the brand's perception from conservative to modern. COTTON USA and John Henry publicized the road trip and new collection launch with billboards, posters and radio spots featuring the COTTON USA Mark. John Henry's Brand Manager said the road trips with COTTON USA across the country allowed them to strategically launch their new collection, build brand awareness and help secure prime retail locations in department stores which would result in higher sales in the long term. John Henry expects to see a 20 percent sales growth as a result of the road trip, resulting in more pull of U.S. cotton through the supply chain, from spinner to end consumer. Last year John Henry labeled 284,799 product units with COTTON USA hangtags.
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CCI Thailand Educates 305 Salespeople About the Advantages of U.S. cotton
Results from the 2009 COTTON USA Mark Tracking that surveyed 500 Thai consumers showed that 40 percent of consumers agreed that the COTTON USA Mark influences their purchasing decisions, and 46 percent of consumers have bought products labeled with the COTTON USA Mark. To improve the salesperson's confidence, attitude and product knowledge, COTTON USA, Jockey and John Henry organized a sales training seminar for their salespeople from nationwide stores in Pattaya. COTTON USA hired a professional sales trainer to lead the full-day training. Cotton, the advantages of U.S. cotton and COTTON USA were covered, and pre- and post-tests were administered to measure effectiveness. Pre-test scores averaged at 55 percent and post-test scores increased significantly to 98 percent. More than 96 percent of the participants agreed that they would join this type of seminar if held again in the future. In 2009, Jockey labeled approximately 652,000 pieces and John Henry labeled about 285,000 pieces with COTTON USA Mark hangtags.
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CCI Selects Winner of the 2010 COTTON USA Design Challenge in Thailand
The winning team, from Chulalongkorn University, will join Praew magazine on a trip to a U.S. cotton field to shoot the winning dresses for the cover of Praew and a 20-page fashion spread. The COTTON USA Design Challenge has been promoted in Thailand for the past five years. The event creates awareness among young designers that 100 percent cotton fabrics can be used as a raw material for fashion apparel, as well as that high quality fabrics made from U.S. cotton can be sourced locally from reputable mills. Fifty-four students from 19 universities across the country participated. Teams of three submitted sketches of 100 percent cotton ready-to-wear couture, using colors from the Cotton Incorporated Fall-Winter 2010/11 color trend forecast. Five judges, included a COTTON USA licensee designer from Blue Corner, two professional designers and Praew magazine's fashion editor, selected five teams as finalists to turn their sketches into real dresses using COTTON USA-qualified 100 percent cotton fabrics from Thai mills sponsoring the challenge.
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