The difference of finding a wholesale hat supplier in 2020 than past years
1.Online event get more popular because of trade shows or events canceled.
As the number of coronavirus cases continues to grow, the events industry is starting to take a hit.
A number of conferences, trade shows and events around the world have been canceled or postponed as attendees and organizers voice concerns about the new coronavirus. In Europe alone, at least 260 conferences have been canceled due to the coronavirus, said Sherrif Karamat, chief executive of PCMA, a trade association representing the business events industry. Most of those events were in Italy.
Already, the virus has killed over 3,000 people, more than 2,800 of whom have been in China’s Hubei province.
In the last 20 years, the conference and convention industry has expanded rapidly, in line with the growth in world economies and markets. In 2017, global business events generated about $1 trillion worth of direct spending, including funds to plan and produce the events and related travel, according to an Events Industry Council report.
There will be “significant impact” on the conference industry this year due to the coronavirus, said Nick Vyas, executive director of the center for global supply chain management at USC Marshall School of Business. “It’ll disrupt the ecosystem supported by the trade shows and conferences.”
So far, these are some of the events that have been canceled, postponed or turned into online-only events.
Mobile World Congress, Barcelona, Feb. 24-27
Trans-Pacific Merchants, Long Beach, March 1-4
American Physical Society meeting, Denver, March 2-6
Natural Products Expo West, Anaheim, March 3-7 (postponed and next month a new date will be announced, conference organizers say)
Geneva International Motor Show, Geneva, Switzerland, March 5-15
Nowruz celebration at UCLA, Los Angeles, March 8
2020 HIMSS Global Health Conference and Exhibition, Orlando, March 9-13
Facebook Global Marketing Summit, San Francisco, March 9-12
CERAWeek, Houston, March 9-13
Game Developers Conference, San Francisco, March 16-20 (postponed until summer, conference organizers say)
Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, the Woodlands, Texas, March 16-20
Business Roundtable CEO Innovation Summit, Washington, D.C., March 18 (will be rescheduled, according to organizers)
Livre Paris book fair, Paris, March 20-23
Nvidia GPU Technology Conference, San Jose, March 22-26 (now an online event)
Adobe Summit and Magento Imagine, Las Vegas, March 29-April 2 (now an online event)
Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Bologna, Italy, March 30-April 2 (rescheduled for May 4-7)
Google Cloud Next ’20, San Francisco, April 6-8 (now an online event)
Facebook F8 conference, San Jose, May 5-6
Google I/O, Mountain View May 12-14
2. Product Cost raise up because of labor workers lacking in China
China is the manufacturing home base for some of the largest companies in the world and had for years been a low-risk manufacturing hub. But the ongoing coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan city in the central province of Hubei and has put Chinese cities on lockdown and prompted transportation bans, is causing labour shortages and logistical challenges.
In the short term, factories operating in China, from component wholesale hat manufacturers to assemblers of finished products, are working to reduce supply chain disruptions. Crucial to the resumption of manufacturing activity is getting people back to work. But it’s easier said than done.
“Some interstate transport has been blocked temporarily, and Wuhan is in the centre of China where people have to go around Hubei province. It’s extra miles [to travel],” said William Chen, FCMA, CGMA, the CFO of a company with manufacturing facilities in China. “You could imagine the challenges.”
For wholesale hat manufacturers of labour-intensive products, the flow of production is critical because production planning is done based on the availability of staff in each product line, Chen said.
The research firm Gartner noted last week that organisations may start seeing supply chain impacts including shortage of materials or finished goods, white and blue-collar labour shortages, restricted sourcing activity to find new business, limited logistics capacity, and consumers buying more online to avoid being exposed to the virus in public spaces.
At this time, wholesale hat manufacturers should prioritise resource planning for raw materials, factory workers, and cash; production planning; and maintaining proactive communication with customers, Chen said.
“It is important to maintain a healthy level of safety stock for both raw materials and finished goods so that production and shipment can resume once that’s possible,” he said.
The epidemic’s death toll is now higher than in the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak in 2002–2003. In the past few weeks, the spread of the virus has impacted tourism and retail industries in China and its neighbouring countries. However, its economic cost on China and the world is still too early to tell as the death toll and infection cases continue to increase.
In a report by the South China Morning Post last week, a China Railway Corporation official was quoted saying that the number of workers travelling back to work over the weekend is estimated to be about a quarter of the usual peak number following the Lunar New Year break.
The report added that the railway company is taking precautionary measures to assure travellers by introducing a ticket sales cap at less than half of total seats available. This allows passengers to be farther apart to reduce the risk of transmission. But these arrangements may not be enough to convince the millions of manufacturing workers to return to their factory jobs.
“Some of them can come back, but, obviously, they’re not very keen on taking the bus, the train for hours and hours in close proximity with other people they don’t know who might come from Hubei,” said Renaud Anjoran, the CEO of manufacturing consulting firm Sofeast, based in Hong Kong. “There’s a lot of worries (and) fears.”
Anjoran said he has “very serious concerns” as wholesale hat manufacturers face labour shortages and possibly a 10% to 20% hike in labour costs on the horizon.
“If people are worried, they will not go back to work,” he said.
Even if workers decide to return to their factory jobs, many worry they would catch the virus while working in confined spaces on assembly lines or while sleeping in workers’ dorms.
Besides a labour shortage, wholesale hat manufacturers have to work around lower air cargo capacity as more than 30 airlines have either suspended all flights or reduced the number of flights. The government’s extension of the Lunar New Year break where 10 February is the first official day workers go back to work also means that there is already a backlog in many factories across the country. China’s ports remain open, but for US and Europe-bound sea shipments, they usually take four weeks longer than air shipments, Anjoran said.
Solving the labour shortage deadlock is crucial for the survival of small and medium-size wholesale hat manufacturers. Unlike large wholesale hat manufacturers, Anjoran’s company — which also owns a small contract wholesale hat manufacturer for consumer electronics in a southern city in mainland China — do not have production alternatives in neighbouring countries like Vietnam, Thailand, or Indonesia. And offshoring production to a new country within a month or two is simply not possible, Anjoran said.
He added that the human resources manager for his factory has managed to get half of the 60 workers needed to come back this week.
For big companies that may already be relocating production outside of China, their plans may be accelerated by the current situation, Anjoran said. “They might already have equipment there, [they] just have to train some people there … they may be able to pick it up,” he said.
He expects this supply chain disruption to continue for the next four to six months if the epidemic doesn’t subside soon.
“We’re going to have to live with shortages [in the short term],” he said.
A business continuity plan with a focus on the IT system, disaster recovery, and the supply chain should already be in place, Chen said. These are the fundamental infrastructure that will enable the management team and office staff to set up committees and task forces to monitor plans, meet virtually from various cities in and outside of China, and allow access to the company’s information and data from home, he added.
“Team agility is key to handling this sort of challenge,” he said.
Disinfects a factory before reopen
3. Shipping cost raising up
Mail and Packages
The cost of mailing a letter through the USPS will remain 55 cents in 2020 — but all seven flat-rate shipping options are going up. FedEx is raising rates across the board, as significantly as 6% for some services. The cost of UPS Ground, Air, and International services is going up by an average of 4.9%.