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Saturday 20.01.2018 | Name days: Aļģirds, Orests, Oļģerts, Alģis

New Rosme: real trade goes only east

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU, New Rosme Chief Executive Edgars Stelmahers

New Rosme Chief Executive Edgars Stelmahers

We send about 80% of our production to the CIS countries with 10% travelling to Scandinavia and 10% sold in the Baltic states, the Latvian-based lingerie maker New Rosme Chief Executive Edgars Štelmahers told in an interview to the business news portal BNN.

Similarly, he also points out the company is to double its staff in Belarus and neigbouring examples show lingerie producers also support the economy – something the government of Latvia is not aware of, he says, adding that one cannot find Rosme production in supermarkets and the company prefers collaborating with Scandinavians due to highly complex procurement procedures in Latvia.

Two years ago you founded crisis management consulting business together with Ingrīda Blūma and Aldis Gobzems. What happened to it?

It has been closed down, because neither of three us had time to deal with it seriously. Aldis Gobzems has his own lawyers office, thus he is very busy and Mrs Bluma is involved in educational programme Mission Possible and development of couching as a movement.

How does the King of Lace title given by the magazine Made in Latvia (Ražots Latvijā) make you feel?

I believe this is more linked to New Rosme as a company, but I am associated with the company. New Rosme has the oldest and richest lingerie production traditions in Latvia since 1952. Undoubtedly, our output is also the leading in the Baltic states.

Swedish Swegmark Holding AB was a part of New Rosme already back in 1993. What was the state of the company when you became its Chief Executive two years ago?

I am familiar with the sector, because previously I worked in Lauma. The company faced a considerable crisis back then, as it did not respond timely to events going on in Russia and dropping sales. Costs reduction and smaller production came too late. It was a complicated time for our company. Possibly, two years before that the situation was completely different.

Have you achieved the goals you set to yourself once becoming New Rosme Chief Executive?

In November 2009 I joined a company that had just lost a million. We concluded 2010 with decent profit, which itself suggests we have succeeded.

Do you produce what other brands order, just like Lauma Lingerie?

We produce for both New Rosme brand and our shareholders – Swegmark after their designs. Similarly, we also service some EU orders. Our capacity does not allow to produce for the leading EU companies. Moreover, that would mean low profitability. Our production goes to Asia and USA markets as well. We can still argue whether French and Italian lingerie brands are the most popular. We use nearly the same materials and gauges.

How much do you export?

We send about 80% of our production to the CIS countries with 10% travelling to Scandinavia and 10% sold in the Baltic states. Currently, we are gradually launching our shops and we have a new manager responsible for the Baltics.

How does the prize «International trophy of quality» help you?

It does not help at all in the Russian market, because we are not represented in Central Europe. We are currently in negotiations with Poland to move west a little, because at the moment real trade goes only east.

Would you like to take part in Riga Fashion Week or the exhibition Made in Baltics?

It is not very topical for us. It does not pay off to place huge investments in marketing, given the Baltic market consumption of 700 000 lats a year. We are quite cautious with such spending. Installment and staff to take part in Made in Baltics would cost several thousand lats. Whom will we show our collection to? Why should we take part in it? 25 housewives can visit our shop any way, we do not have to take part in a useless exhibition and spend resources on that. We represent ourselves in Paris, Moscow and Kiev exhibitions that are key locations to our business.

Why isn’t lingerie production among the most supported sectors in EU and Latvia?

You should ask this the Economy Minister Artis Kampars. Lingerie producers are not lobbying in the Saeima, because nothing has been taken away from us. The sector has always developed on its own without any state subsidies, bonuses or special regulations. I believe National Armed Forces and State Police procurement procedures are so complex there is no use in taking part in them and employing a separate department for that matter. It is easier for us to produce lingerie for Swedish army, which we are and successfully. There is less bureaucracy and more orders. From the perspective of time we have invested and resources, our key priority is finding new customers in Kiev, Ukraine or Kazakhstan. If the government took a look around the world, it would see oversea neighbour’s H&M, Spanish Inditex Group with Zara, Bershka, Massimo Dutti, Oysho, as well as brands in Italy support the economy. Textile industry is rather sustainable and tough despite the non-existent state aid.


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