In the News | 26 January 2023

Welcome back -- catch up on global headlines, SA retail, Eskom vs Fashion & new opportunities for funding + jobs

In the News | 26 January 2023
(Andrej Lišakov, Unsplash)

Hello in 2023!

While I am not back at 100%, I am well on my way and have the support I need. I look forward to being able to pour more of myself into this and other endeavours as I recover. [I'll also take this opportunity to encourage everyone to take better care of themselves in 2023 – a large part of my health issues last year came down to exhaustion.]

Coming soon:

  • A primer on the pros and cons of choosing a marketplace as your next distribution channel (as Amazon makes plans for Prime, marketplace & fulfilment service launches in South Africa, still rumoured to be set for next month)
  • What South African designers can learn from Nigerian designers as loadshedding's effects worsen (Nigeria's power utility NEPA is a likely picture of where ESKOM is headed without intervention)
  • A long overdue feature on how collecting and leveraging first-party data helped Pichulik jewellery respond to the pandemic.

Are there stories you want told in 2023? Let me know — subscribers can now reply directly to the newsletter or start a conversation in the comment section on site.


Dakar puts itself on the global creative industry's radar, the New York Times' T Magazine explores Johannesburg's creative industry appeal, Africa Fashion Guide breaks down business lessons from the rise and fall of the Grass Fields brand, and a new probe reveals the depth of the network of corruption at South Africa's state owned power utility ESKOM, corruption that has fuelled capacity generation problems that now plague national productivity and threaten small business survival.

Dakar establishing itself as a global destination for the creative industries
Dakar’s fashion, art, and heritage scenes have attracted attention from both domestic and international brands.
Eskom shocks for the South African apparel industry
Eskom shocks for the South African apparel industry
SIU probe shines bright light on crippling Eskom rot
The SIU conducted a deep dive into the ailing power utility, looking into the procurement and transportation of coal and diesel, procurement of cloud computing services and software.
Business Lessons from the Rise and Fall of Grass-Fields - African Fashion
If you are a business owner, in particular an African fashion entrepreneur then this will speak volumes to you. I am sharing this story about the fashion brand Grass-fields.

In retail: a brick & mortar revival takes shape across South Africa, Woolworths shows signs of recovery, Mr Price Group's Studio 88 acquisition pays off early, new Jumia Uganda chief shares developed economy lessons on scaling e-commerce, TFG partners with TymeBank on new financial products after reporting record sales for Black Friday and Cyber Monday (north of R1B in turnover) and all signs point to Amazon South Africa launch between February and April 2023.

South Africa’s retail revival is cashing in
Newer retailers are setting the benchmark for South Africa’s retail landscape, with plenty of room for innovation in bricks and mortar
Amazon still on track to launch in South Africa, insiders say
Amazon is still on track to launch in South Africa, insiders say.
Woolworths expects huge boost in earnings
Upper-end retailer Woolworths reveals new insights in its latest trading update for shareholders.
Could Woolworths’s fashion turnaround strategy finally be taking shape?
Perhaps a little more consistency would convince the market.
Mr Price Q3 sales jump on Studio 88 acquisition
Value fashion retailer Mr Price reported a 34% surge in third-quarter sales, boosted mostly by its recent acquisition of branded footwear and clothing company Studio 88 Group...
E- commerce growth is promising – Jumia boss
70 percent of our population is still exploring how e- commerce works, they want to have the trust that they will get genuine products.
Big changes for TymeBank and one of South Africa’s biggest retailers
TymeBank enters another partnership, this time with the largest clothing retailer in South Africa.
Load-shedding drives TFG clients to digital platforms
The retailer’s online turnover grew 43%, as customers shunned shopping centres and turned to e-commerce platforms.


The new trade season for designers looking to sell to Europe will kick off in February with new players and new platform options, new data reveals the impact of location (versus fibre type) on fashion's carbon emissions, Glossy investigates Tik Tok's role as a breeding ground for fashion trends and tighter budgets encourage brands to explore automation and other cost-cutting solutions.

The Folklore Connect Plans Its Own Digital Trade Show and In-Person Showcase With RAISEfashion
The digital trade show is Feb. 1-3, while the in-person showcase at Shopify New York’s space takes place Feb. 9-12 during New York Fashion Week.
3 Trade Shows to to Discover Emerging Brands in 2023
Despite digital events, in-person trade shows remain key for brands and buyers for fostering innovation, exchange of knowledge and ideas, and creating business opportunities in wholesale retail
Nike to release a book to inspire better design
In Pictures Sportswear giant Nike is releasing a new book to inspire the next generation of athletes to imagine “the infinite possibilities of design and...
Bode bets on womenswear, returns to Paris with first co-ed show
After a three-year hiatus, the cult New York menswear brand is returning to Paris Fashion Week with a mixed show, including hotly anticipated womenswear pieces for the first time.
Couture newcomer Robert Wun on selling to the super rich
The London-based couturier is a new name on the Paris haute couture calendar, and has the support of Chanel’s fashion president Bruno Pavlovsky. Ahead of his first show, Wun explains why he pivoted away from ready-to-wear.
Biodegradable clothing | A solution to the fashion effect? | Luxiders
Biodegradable clothing is one of the answers and one of the main bets of the sector to boost sustainability.
Location, not fibre type, impact fashion emissions - Apparel Insider
Spread the loveGENEVA – Sustainability indices used by the fashion industry are giving a distorted impression of GHG emissions and … Continue reading “Location, not fibre type, impact fashion emissions”
Automation, Action, And Investment: This Week In Fashion Technology
In a difficult climate, the commercial pendulum is swinging towards cost-cutting and automation in fashion.
Why TikTok became the breeding ground for fashion trends
Throughout the mid- to late-2010s, the best place to find out about fashion trends was on Instagram. In the late 2000s it was style blogs, and before that, glossy print magazines. Now, TikTok is filling that role as the place where users go to find out what’s in style.
Brands Can Start Tracing Their Supply Chain with FibreTrace’s Free Blockchain Platform - Ecocult
Supply chain transparency is a must-have for the fashion industry. Tech company FibreTrace is launching a new solution to help brands become traceable and transparent for free.
Gucci named in carbon offsetting controversy - Apparel Insider
Spread the lovePARIS – Luxury fashion brand Gucci is among dozens of companies to have purchased controversial rainforest offsets which … Continue reading “Gucci named in carbon offsetting controversy”
CFDA film chronicles American fashion history
Runway show and film producer Nian Fish breaks down her visual journey in the U.S. fashion industry.



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