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End of Year balance
Written by Kevin Van Lancker, CEO

Dear valued customer,

I’ve been really lucky to have had the chance to start my career at one of the today’s leading cycling brands out of Australia. They have given me the knowledge and the network to be where I am today after ending my professional sports career but but I have never met so many talented individuals, dedicated to the future of sportswear manufacturing, as I have since I started The Sportswear Factory. So in the first place, this is a sincere Thank You to everyone involved on a day to day basis and with who I have the pleasure to work with intensively.

Their passion for positive change goes right to heart of the challenges facing our clients today. An uncertain economic climate after the Brexit, the unpredictable consequences of the new president in the United States, it all plays a role in the decision making of the purchase managers that visit us. But the team that is involved in the manufacturing of apparel at our plants, understands these challenges and by adopting new technology and listening closely to our client's needs, we have managed to finish the year at all times highs.

2016 has been a breakthrough year with export numbers through the roofs. We fill multiple plants with orders on a daily basis and have helped our customers to grow even stronger due to automated processes that make them stand out from the competition. 

We no longer need to hire extra graphic designers as we have automated the design process and will soon put that system available to you, our customer, as well. That way, we excluded the possibility for human-errors, leading to frustration from your and your end-customer's side.

I believe we are the 1st sportswear manufacturing plant in Europe that is working on a zero-waste policy. The textile industry has a bad name when it comes to pollution. Unfortunately, the technologies we use today are still causing an high level of pollution. Therefor, as of 2017, we have implemented a new plan to reduce our waste even more and make our footprint as small as possible. Fabric leftovers are being reworked into new garments. We hope to introduce a line of products made of recycled materials already during the course of 2017.

Speed is everything. We know that, our clients know that. Together we can help meet the expectations of customers who demand greater products, delivered faster than ever before. We continue to strive to ship all of our orders not more than 2.5 weeks after the order confirmation which really is an outstanding performance. And let me tell you even more: We believe that by the end of 2017, due to the automated design processes and the automated ordering systems, which took all together 4 years to develop, we will be able to ship out orders in just 7 working days.

We continue to nurture this unmatched passion for innovation in sportswear manufacturing. In the coming months and years, we will bring on board more super-talented people to bolster our teams worldwide from Australia to USA. And from South Africa to Norway. And everything in between. We are unstoppable as we are driven by the joy and lovely words from our customers when they receive their shipments of high end sports apparel produced by us. We will continue to increase rewards for the people involved in the process as I still stand by my word that too many people in Eastern Europe are underpaid, while they deliver outstanding work on a day to day basis.

Finally, I would like to wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Stay safe and healthy and we hope we will do great business together in 2017. Sure come visit us at The Sportswear Factory in Riga, Latvia!

Thank you.

Kevin Van Lancker

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