Quality in Supply Chain Management (leather Industry)

Undertake a critical assessment of trends, problems and opportunities associated with improving quality within the supply chains of leather industry.

Table of Contents 

1.1 Introduction
1.2 Diamond Model of National advantage
1.3 The Made in Italy Concept
1.4 Gucci’s Tops the List (a case study)
1.5 Lag and Quandary in Indian Industry (Problems)
1.6 The Competitive Protocols (Benchmark)
1.7 Quality Assurance Competency
1.8 Fabricating an Effective, Efficient and Qualitative Supply chain
1.9 Embark Managing Uncertainty
1.10 Current Trends and Opportunities
1.11 Conclusion 10

1.1 # Introduction

The objective of this essay is to undertake a critical assessment of trends, problems and opportunities associated with improving quality with in the supply chain of leather industry.Contemporary trends in communication and information technologies have made supply chain contingency a strategic tools for leather industries to enhance their value creation. Despite the advanced trends the uncertain nature of ventures in developing countries shows an evident difficulty in terms of competitiveness and efficiencies. The manufacturing Industries all over the world are continuously upgrading the manufacturing techniques such as quality assurance, business process reengineering, lean technology, indispensable audits, laboratory testing, etc; in-spite of all the efforts, the leather industries in developing countries has not yet reached the industrial benchmarking. The demanding market competition are forcing industries to apply quality management in the entire supply chain rather that in end products only. This is due to the competitive scenario that have moved from business to business concept to supply chain to supply chain concept. The established leader of this industry in the international level is Italy, and India is one of the emerging market; by comparing the contemporary strategy in both will perceive the emphasis of quality assurance techniques integrated in the supply chain (Georgise, Thoben, and Seifert 2014).

1.2 #Diamond Model of National Advantage

This model reveals the fact that the ability of the firms in an international arena is whose origin is in a particular country to succeed in International arena is framed by four factors.

(1) their home country’s demand condition,

(2) their home country’s factor condition,

(3)related and supporting industries with their home country, and

(4) Strategy, structure, rivalry among their domestic competition (Ketchen and Short 2012).


 1.3 The ‘Made in Italy’ Concept 

World wide it is accepted The Made in Italy Concept is synonym to quality. Italian leather apparels especially foot wears are considered to be superior when compared to other countries like Indian in spite of the resources being high . Italian industries ‘lead’ because of the concept of ‘relating and supporting industry’. Shoemakers such as Salvatore Ferragamo, Prada, Gucci, and Versace benefit from the availability of top-quality leather within their home country and could produce fine products . If these shoemakers needed to rely on imported leather, they would lose flexibility and speed. The Italians have already reached the second stage of industrial benchmarking and started focusing on total quality improvement in system and business processes (Guillaume et al. 2014); (Pirolo1, and, and Nenni2 2013). Italian brands such as Gucci and Prada have become another name for style and high fashion globally. The designer brands have achieved its popularity not only because of its unique designs but also Italy produces approximately 50% of the machinery used to produce footwear and leather goods around the world and 80% of tanning machinery globally. The Italian leather making machineries can efficiently provide information about the defect cause; that occurs after a month the customers buys it. Italy is the leading country in Europe with more no of establishment, employees, production and sales.By rectifying the causes and continuous improvement in quality had made them reach the long term sustainability (Katz 2009).But Indian industries are still striving to cross the first stage of competence protocol even after holding a huge raw material resources (21% of cattle and buffalo; 11% of world sheep and goat) and second and third largest producers of footwear, leather garments and saddlers and harness items respectively. This is mainly because of the quality of the hide procured, the processing techniques, design and crafting, efficient manufacturing and proper distribution and promotional channels are not up to the mark to meet the world standards

1.4 Gucci’s Tops the List (a case study)

‘Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten’. Gucci (Lester 2014) According to Nicola Ruiz Gucci is the “worlds’s most desirable brand”(Ruiz 2008) Being an iconic Italian brand Gucci ensures that the quality of the leather is consistent to meet the customers expectation. All the luxury leather brands in Italy are emphasising their standard by owning the supply chain from supply of raw material through to the retailer. Above this it maintains a good customer relationship management and completes its order on time through traditional as well as direct distribution. Offers after sales services, priority waiting list ,corporate gift services and alterations as value added services. All the above factors makes the Gucci products highly sustainable. The company earned the ISO 14001 and began Eco friendly initiatives and moved into green supply chain.Hence most of the Italian leather industry follow the same strategic principals and have crossed level II of industrial bench marking (Keach 2012).

1.5 Lag and Quandary in Indian Industry (Problems)

India’s leading brands such as Red tape, Metro, Khadims, Lakhani, Liberty, etc are brands of eminence but confined to Indian market. Capable of producing niche leather products like Italy, India can become a sustainable market with a low labour cost that refers to 10% of the production cost. Where in Italy The labour cost exceeds 38% and the companies are looking for joint venture with India to increase trade. India with highest population of buffalo in the world and increased exports throughout the world could not achieve the reach of Italy because of low availability of fine quality leather from abattoirs.Current scenario of Indian industries are insufficient tanning technologies, low productivity and poor workmanship, Lack of efficient environmental control, lack of trade information and market intelligence, high capital cost and investment climate (DSIR INDIA). The leather apparel statistics shows that India is lagging behind Italy by a huge margin. Italy facing labour constrains could achieve a turn over ten times more than India this is because 80% of the work in India is manual which is mostly automated in Italy. As mentioned earlier in this report Italy produces most of the automated machineries used in leather goods making.

1.6 The Competitive Protocols (Benchmarking)

A critical analysis of competitive protocols in leather industries shows that India is unsustainable to current industry benchmarking due to inefficient and cumbersome cost structure, labour productivity, process timings, rejecting and waste control, quality accreditation, working environment, capacity utilisation, system improvement and business leadership (DSIR). If quality assurance can be applied in each of this area and by reengineering the supply chain India could reach its ‘Long Term Sustainability’.

1.7 Quality Assurance Competency

“The leather product industry plays a prominent role in the world’s economy, with an estimated global trade value of approximately 100 billion US dollars” (UNIDO 2010). The quality assurance would entitle industry with a futuristic, sustainable, hand on solutions that leads to profit in an ethical manner. In todays competitive world of business ‘quality’ has become a major influential factor in capturing the market or effective reach-out to the customers. A supply chain has many possibilities of failure due to waste, process slowing down, poor quality and lost sales that can drastically reduce the profit margins. And with cost continuing to raise the supply chain cannot make the most effective use of the resources. Hence quality management should be implemented right from the beginning; especially in leather garment industry quality of the product plays a vital role.

 1.8 Fabricating an effective, efficient and qualitative Supply Chain (Lester 2014)

To rejig the mores of leather industry to deliver a sustainable leading-edge supply chain practices three main input variable should be considered; effective, efficiency and quality.

This could be achieved by assuring quality through out the supply chain that would eliminate the cost of poor quality that easily exceeds 10% of the factory cost in general.

Abolishing the inefficiencies unseen in a supply chain such as wasted time, labour, material and capital that would ever exceed the purchase cost.

Abolishing the cost of recalls, reworks, delivery delays and penalties by performing a laboratory testing of products. This would in turn save the brand equity and organisational repose.

Indispensable Audits: Specialised audits conducted in all factories such as tanneries as well as footwear, apparel, outdoor gear, leather goods , etc would give an opportunity to manage risk and more enlightened business resolutions .

Constantly monitored warehousing: This is the most important area where the quality management plays an important role. One of the most consequential problem faced by the leather goods industry and its products is that the molds. Moldy products landing up at the destination will create a devastating effect in economic value. The cost to the industry would be several million dollars. Substantial monitoring will result in eliminating the time, energy and resources essential to overhaul the dissenting effects on the brand and company created by mold-havoc shipments (Neeta Nigam, &, and Nair 1994).

 Implementing ‘Lean, Agile and Green supply chain’ principles, techniques, tools and training that would eradicate waste and increasing value to reach the current industry benchmark. Review by Anh and Vinh explains the importance of integrated green supply chain that includes the nexus of lean production, agile manufacturing and green supply chain (Anh and Nguyen Quang Vinh).

A customised ‘Quality Ensuring Programs and Trainings’ within the industry will result in sustaining production quality and eradication of waste. This will definitely increase the profit margins or returns.

TQM: An empirical study on implementation TQM in supply chain management and found out that it not only improves that quality of supply chain but also the aspects in which the company recognises their limitations (Casadesús and de Castro 2005).

1.9 Embark Managing Uncertainty

Prior to all a company must understand the customer and supply chain uncertainty which is the customer needs for each targeted segment. The supply chain uncertainty helps the company identify the intensity of demand uncertainty and performance cycle uncertainty for which the company should be prepared for (Bowersox et al. 2013). Uncertainty is inversely proportionate to decision making in collaborative supply chain (Guillaume et al. 2014). Hence for creating effective value chain uncertainty should be taken into consideration. The study on challenges of value chain on African market shows that it was due to the poor value addition initiatives (Mwinyihija; and Quiesenberry 2017), according to Mwinyihiji and Quisenberry a vague quality assurance strategy, irrelevant policies and legal framework was the defect in prevailing supply chain strategy and suggested that eliminating uncertainty to a maximum level would aid in building up an effective supply chain (Mwinyikione Mwinyihija and Quisenberry 2013).

1.10 Current Trends and opportunities

According to Mwinyihija though Synthetics has predominantly increased its market prevalence, great opportunities still exist will a future carrying a vivid forecast. In recent days leather industries are concentrating more in environmental wellness and green supply chain by moving to environmental friendly technologies. And followed by communication technology plays a vital role in globalising the leather industries and firms to reinforce the online business sales and services. (Mwinyikione Mwinyihija 2014) Indian Industries by enhancing its participation in world leather trade through joint venture, upgrading to OEM(oracle enterprise manager) and OBM (original brand manufacturer), outsourcing and triangular manufacturing have a greater opportunities to hit the global market by achieving the benchmarking (Mwinyikione Mwinyihija 2014). Other quality management areas in general of keen attention are standardisation of quality process, quality management softwares, creating business process platform, quality metrics programs, supplier quality management. The recent innovation is 3D printing in supply chain while other trends are global labour cost equalise, innovative replacement in raw material scarcity, skill specialisation, emergence of control tower etc. Government of India has submitted a twelfth five year plan on leather and leather products to cope with the global market (DIPP 2011).

1.11 Conclusion

The discussion brings forth the Qualitative Supply Chain strategies of developed countries had set a hight standard or benchmarking for the emerging countries to restructure and reengineer the current supply chain trends. There are different variable that effect and affect the supply chain and quality; hence efficient planing, operating and executing will eliminate all ignorance and uncertainty in the present field. Italian leather sectors have efficiently manipulated their qualitative strategies and carrying themselves to the next level of improvement. But Indian sectors have to work far more ahead to cross over Italy. But India could commensurate by accommodating the current trends and technologies with efficient strategies.


Accord Fintech. 2014. “”Indian Leather Industry Likely to Grow significantly in Coming

Years.”.” ProQuest (Sep 30).

Anh, Nguyen Viet, and Nguyen Quang Vinh.

Bowersox, Donald J., David J. Closs, M.Bixby Cooper, and John C. Bowersox. 2013. Supply

Chain Logistics Management. 4 ed: McGraw-Hill Education (Asia).

Casadesús, Martí, and Rodolfo de Castro. 2005. “How improving quality improves supply

chain management: empirical study.” The TQM Magazine 17 (4):345-357. doi:


DIPP. 2011. Leather & Leather Products Twelfth Five Year Plan Period (2012‐17) Submitted.

India: Ministry of Commerce & Industry.

DSIR. Leather & Footwear: Productivity & Efficiency Benchmarking. India: Department of

Scientific and Industrial Research (India).

Georgise, Fasika Bete, Klaus-Dieter Thoben, and Marcus Seifert. 2014. “Supply Chain

Integration in the Manufacturing Firms in Developing Country: An Ethiopian Case

Study.” Journal of Industrial Engineering 2014:1-13. doi: 10.1155/2014/251982.

Gonca Telli Yamamoto, .zgür Şekeroğlu, and Eser Eke Bayramoğlu. 2011. “Marketing

Activities in the leather industry: Comparative Country Analysis.” International Journal

of Economics and Management Sciences Vol.1 (No.3):37-48.

Guillaume, R., G. Marques, C. Thierry, and D. Dubois. 2014. “Decision support with ill-known

criteria in the collaborative supply chain context.” Engineering Applications of Artificial

Intelligence 36:1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.engappai.2014.06.013.

Katz, Jonathan. 2009. “Leather Products Still Fasionable in Italy.” Industryweek, Nov 9.

Keach, Elizaberth. 2012. “Gucci: sustainable Luxury at its Finest.” Urban Times, 21 May.

Ketchen, Dave, and Jeremy Short. 2012. Strategic Management: Evaluation and Execution.

Vol. 1.0.

Lester, Albert. 2014. “Project Management, Planning and Control.” doi: 10.1016/


Mwinyihija;, Mwinyikione, and William Quiesenberry. 2017. “Review of the challenges

towards value addition of the leather sector in Africa.” Global Advanced Research

Journal of Management and Business Studies 2(11):518-528.

Mwinyikione Mwinyihija, William Quiesenberry. 2014. “Emerging World Leather Trends and

Continental Shifts on Leather and Leather goods Production.” Advances in Business

Management and Administration 1.

Mwinyikione Mwinyihija, William Quiesenberry, and William Quisenberry. 2013. “Is

Opportunity Management A Precursor To Leather Value Addition Initiatives?” The

International Journal Of Business & Management 1 (5).

Neeta Nigam, Shashi Dhawan &, and M. V. Nair. 1994. “Deterioration of Feather and Leather

Objects of some Indian Museums by Keratinophilic and Non-keratinophilic Fungi.”

International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation 33:145-152.

Pirolo1, Luca, Luca Giustiniano1 and, and Maria Elena Nenni2. 2013. “The Italian Footwear

Industry: an Empirical Analysis.” International Journal of Engineering Business

Management Special Issue on Innovations in Fashion Industry 5. doi:


Ruiz, Nicola. 2008. “Worlds most desierable luxurt brand.” Forbes, 25 Mar.

UNIDO. 2010. “”Future Trends in World Leather Products Industry and Trade”.” United

Nations Industrial Development Organisation Vienna:120.

Singapore National day

A Tribute to Singapore on the National day, August 9, 2017

The National Day of Singapore is celebrated every year on August 9, in commemoration of the Singapore’s independence from Malaysia in the year 1965. This holiday features a National Day Parade, an address by the Prime Minister of Singapore, and fireworks celebrations.

The Little Red Dot turns 52 this year; As a tribute we bring you some insights while we celebrate Singapore’s birthday.

  • The inaugural National Day Parade (NDP) was held at the Padang in 1966 to commemorate where Singapore declared its independence. From the year SG50 NDP not only returns to the Padang, it also includes another ticketed site at The Float @ Marina Bay.
  • Rain in Singapore is a common occurrence; it’s bound to rain on the parade. The first NDP to experience rainfall was in 1966, at 10.37am.
  • The average Parade & Ceremony involves over 2,000 people who have gone through 200 hours of training before the grand day.
  • The parade used to be held in the morning till 1973, when it became an early evening event to attract more attendance from the public. It proved to be such a huge success, that the parade has continued to start at 5.30pm to this day.
  • The name Singapore was evolved from the story Sang Nila Utama, a prince from Palembang who saw a creature he thought was a lion, and duly named the island Singapura, which means “Lion City” in Sanskrit.
  • Singapore has changed time zones 6 times since 1905.
  • The largest fountain in the world is located in Singapore at Suntec City. Made of cast bronze, it cost an estimated US$ 6 million to build in 1997.
  • The national anthem is printed in micro text on the back of our S$1000 note. We hope you’ve got deep pockets and a magnifying glass ready.




Singapore Night Festival

Singapore Night Festival

The Singapore Night Festival is more than just another outdoor performing arts festival, it is an annual festival celebrating heritage, arts, food and everything in between! It’s a platform for artists to come together to collaborate, create and engage festival-goers of all ages. It’s a platform for artists to come together to collaborate, create and engage festival-goers of all ages.


It is held primarily around the vicinity of Singapore’s Arts and Heritage Precincts of Bras Basah, Bugis and Bencoolen where the National Museum, Singapore Art Museum, Philatelic Museum, Peranakan Museum are located.

10 things to look forward to at the Singapore Night festival

1. GLOBE by Close Act

Using circus techniques, pyrotechnics and video projection to create the visualisation of liberty and joy of flying. GLOBE is an alienating, fairylike spectacle full of symbolism. Explore the real world from child’s perspective as the central character creates a world that transcends religion, esotericism and cultural traditions.

2. THE BLUE HEADS by Sans Compering Fixe

Two roaming silhouettes topped with huge vintage style bulbs instead of heads, struggling valiantly against their planned extinction, communicating through flickering light. As the last of the near-extinct filament bulbs, The Bulb Heads wander through the dark, providing illumination in more than one way.

3. FLOCK* by Sans Compagnie Fixe

Step directly into the heart of Tchaikovsky’s 1876 ballet, Swan Lake, with Flock (2017). An immersive space, it combines light, sound and projection with live motion tracking technology. Visitors are placed within the corps de ballet, where they can explore the narrative from a unique perspective.

4. THE BLINKING ORGANISM – You Spleen Me Round X Operation 00100* by Joo Choon Lin

As an addition to her original three part series work The Blinking Organism X You Spleen Me Round, Choon Lin continues her exploration of the materiality of the human body and the mystery of emotions.

5. NOSTOS: Records Of The Self* by Aesop

To mark the Singapore Night Festival’s 10th anniversary, Aesop offers a scent experience for the occasion. Visitors use their nose to navigate the space, imprinting the aroma to memory. The title takes inspiration from the Greek word Nostos, meaning homecoming. When paired with algos, meaning ache, the words form ‘nostalgia’ – a feeling for which scent is an evocative trigger.


(The Standing Men)* by Pierre Amoudruz, Victor Roux, Valentin Durif

The Standing Men call out to those strolling by to initiate a dialogue with them. Colours change and the statues come to life in an unpredictable way, transforming the installation into a ballet of light. It will feature voices of inhabitants in Bras Basah-Bugis that were recorded in August 2017.


This year, Hello, Bicycle! offers festival-goers a whole new way to whizz your way through the arts and heritage district, exploring Night Lights installations across the Bras Basah-Bugis area on wheels! So, enjoy Night Lights, on your own bikes or rent one for free!

8. HOMEMADE: Lindy Rocks! by Raw Earth

Get your feet tapping with HomeMade: Lindy Rocks! which blends the fantastic music styles of Raw Earth with the electric energy of Lindy Hop. So hop, tap and jive the night away!


DECK presents Play to Screen, a visual and music performance celebrating the beauty of image making. For two nights under the stars, witness Magnum Photos, Aik Beng Chia and Mindy Tan on an outdoor projection, and accompanied by young musicians Lim Han Quan and Kevin Tan Han Ming from Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts. A special screening of Wagner, Genius in Exile, where he traces the trail of his great-great-grandfather, the renowned composer Richard Wagner’s exile to Switzerland.


The Festival Village is back with a stellar line-up of musical performances, pro-wrestling shows by Grapple Max Dojo down at the Pit and roving acts! Be ready for an amazing mix of eclectic styles of music, from both within our shores and beyond. Indulge in specially curated epicurean and shopping experiences with over 30 flea market and food and beverage stalls at Festival Village this year.