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                          INDUSTRY PROFILE #6
                            BLUE JEANS
                              Prepared By
                            Edward Hochberg
                              Reviewed By
                            George J. Coury
                          Robert W. Rugenstein
                             Published By
    1600 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 500, Arlington, Virginia 22209 USA
            Telephone: (703) 276-1800, Fax: (703) 243-1865
                  Telex 440192 VITAUI, Cable: VITAINC
          Internet., Bitnet. vita@gmuvax
                              Blue Jeans
                          ISBN: 0-86619-293-X
              [C]1987, Volunteers in Technical Assistance
                           INDUSTRY PROFILES
This Industry Profile is one of a series briefly describing small or medium-sized industries, The
Profiles provide basic information for starting manufacturing plants in developing nations.
Specifically, they provide general plant descriptions, financial, and technical factors for their
operation, and sources of information and expertise. The series is intended to be useful in
determining whether the industries described warrant further inquiry either to rule out or to
decide upon investment. The underlying assumption of these Profiles is that the individual
making use of them already has some knowledge and experience in industrial development.
Dollar values are listed only for machinery and equipment costs, and are primarily based on
equipment in the United States. The price does not include shipping costs or import-export taxes,
which must be considered and will vary greatly from country to country. No other investment
costs are included (such as land value, building rental, labor, etc.) as those prices also vary.
These items are mentioned to provide the investor with a general checklist of considerations for
setting up a business.
These profiles should not be substituted for feasibility studies. Before an investment is made in
a plant, a feasibility study should be conducted. This may require skilled economic and
engineering expertise. The following illustrates the range of questions to which answers must
be obtained:
  *   What is the extent of the present demand for the product, and how is it now being
  *   Will the estimated price and quality of the product make it competitive.
  *   What is the marketing and distribution plan and to whom will the product be
  *   How will the plant be financed?
  *   Has a realistic time schedule for construction, equipment, delivery, obtaining
      materials and supplies, training of personnel, and the start-up time for the plant
      been developed?
  *   How are needed materials and supplies to be procured and machinery and
      equipment to be maintained and repaired?
   *   Are trained personnel available?
  *   Do adequate transportation, storage, power, communication, fuel, water, and
      other facilities exist?
  *   What management controls for design, production, quality control, and other
      factors have been included?
  *   Will the industry complement or interfere with development plans for the area?
  *   What social, cultural, environmental, and technological considerations must be
      addressed regarding manufacture and use of this product?
Fully documented information responding to these and many other questions should be
determined before proceeding with implementation of an industrial project.
              Equipment Suppliers, Engineering Companies
The services of professional engineers are desirable in the design of industrial plants even though
the proposed plant may be small. A correct design is one that provides the greatest economy in
the investment of funds and establishes the basis of operation that will be most profitable in the
beginning and will also be capable of expansion without expensive alteration.
Professional engineers who specialize in industrial design can be found be referring to the
published cards in various engineering magazines. They may also be reached through their
national organizations.
Manufacturers of industrial equipment employ engineers familiar with the design and installation
of their specialized products. These manufacturers are usually willing to give prospective
customers the benefit of technical advice by those engineers in determining the suitability of their
equipment in any proposed project.
Volunteers in Technical Assistance (VITA) is a private, non-profit, volunteer organization
engaged in international development. Through its varied activities and services, VITA fosters
self-sufficiency by promoting increased economic productivity. Supported by a volunteer roster
of over 5,000 experts in a wide variety of fields, VITA is able to provide high quality technical
information to requesters. This information is increasingly conveyed through low-cost advanced
communication technologies, including terrestrial packet radio and low-earth-orbiting satellite.
VITA also implements both long- and short-term projects to promote enterprise development and
transfer technology.
                               BLUE JEANS
Prepared by:  Edward Hochberg
Reviewed by:  Richard W. Rugenstein
              George J. Coury
1.   The Product
Blue jeans are work pants made from cotton denim. These blue
jeans have four pockets, with brass rivets used at pocket
openings where the stress is greatest. Waist sizes range from 28
to 44 inches, while lengths are 30 to 36 inches.
There are also fashion junior and children's jeans that can be
made with the same equipment and similar materials.
2.   The Facility.
This Profile describes one plant operating with one shift and
making 15,000 dozens of blue jeans a year, and another that
produces 22,000 dozens a year.
It is especially important for a small factory to be able to
produce varied styles.  Therefore, it is imperative to have a
designer/pattern-maker available to quickly produce properly
fitted items as requested by the customer.
Capital requirements for this plant are moderate and little
technical skill is needed.  The product is in wide demand but
price competition is often keen. Production appears suitable for
many developing areas.
1. Outlook
   A. Economic
   Depends on the conditions in country.
   B. Technical
   Good used reconditioned sewing machines can perform just as
well as some of the items listed on page 4. They can cost half
the price of new machines.
2. Manufacturing Equipment Flexibility
The machinery and equipment used to produce blue jeans are
similar to the kind used in the apparel industry to manufacture
other types of clothing. Therefore, this plant could manufacture
other wearable items or other fabric products.
3. Knowledge Base
A good business plan is necessary. A two to three-year projection
should be prepared and caution taken against overextension.
Management should have:
    a) Business experience
    b) Knowledge of field
    c) Sources of capital
    d) Knowledge of market
    e) Knowledge of procurement of material & equipment
    f) Capability to find government support
4. Quality Control
Quality control is very important, and specifications vary from
company to company and garment to garment. For example, an
entire order can be rejected for as little an error as the number
of stitches per inch or the tension of the thread.
5. Constraints and Limitations
In developing countries there is usually an ample labor pool that
is easily adapted to this industry.  However, there may be a
shortage of designers, pattern-makers, cutters, and mechanics.
Other considerations include:
   --There are no special transportation requirements, but good
     highways would be helpful.
   --Manager and supervisors should be fully experienced.
   --Some operators will be operating more than one machine.
   --After break-in period, production workers should go on piece
     work rates.
   --Experienced cutters and designer/pattern-maker are required.
1. Users
   Individuals, institutions,and organizations.
2. Suppliers
In most urban centers there are sales representatives of equipment
manufacturers and jobbers of fabrics.  It may be too
expensive to go to the United States or other western nations to
look for design, fabrics and machines.  Hong Kong and Tokyo are
also good sources for these items.
3. Sales Channels and Methods
Sales may be made direct to large stores and to wholesale houses
for distribution to small retail outlets. The market needed will
depend to a great extent upon the purchasing power of the local
One path to explore is contracting with U.S. garment manufacturers
that could supply a steady source of work for the plant.
However, large investments in plant and equipment for exports
should not be undertaken unless there is a written commitment
from the manufacturer or contractor who can guarantee an outlet
for the garments.
4. Geographic Extent of Market
Domestic - Product is easy to ship and transport costs are
normally low in relation to product value. Market may be nationwide.
5. Competition
   A. Domestic Market
   Very small makers and imports may provide competition.
   B. Export Market
   The plant is relatively small and might have great difficulty
in competing with large-scale plants or with exports from areas
where labor is plentiful and cheap.
6. Market Capacity
Under average conditions a population of about a million would
probably be large enough to support production of a small plant.
       Requirements                        Annual Output:
                                     15,000 dozen             22,000 dozen
1.   Infrastructure, Utilities       Small Plant        Medium Plant
    Land                            1/2 acre           1/3 acre
    Building (one story)            6,000 s.f.         10,000 s.f.
    Power    connected load        100 hp             120 hp
    Fuel (for steam, heat)
    Water (processing, sanitation, fire)
    Other                           __________         ____________
2.   Major Equipment & Machinery     Small Plant        Medium Plant
                                      Units             Units
    Tools & Machines
    cloth spreader                      (1)                (1)
    cloth unwinder                      (1)               (1)
    cutting tables                      (2)                (2)
    cutting machine (heavy duty)        (3)                (4)
    cloth drill                         (1)                (1)
    buttonhole machine                  (1)                (1)
    button stamp machine                (1)                (1)
    riveting machine                    (1)                (2)
    feed-off-arm machine                (2)                (2)
    double needle machine              (11)               (13)
    bartack machine                     (1)                (2)
    safety stitch machine               (7)                (9)
    single needle machine               (6)                (8)
    overlock                            (1)                (2)
    pocket press                       (1)               (2)
    double needle flatbed
      for loops                         (1)                (1)
    Support Equipment & Parts
    furniture & fixtures
    hand trucks                         (3)                (1)
    20 hp boiler                        (1)                (1)
    pressing machine                    (1)                (2)
    chairs & workbenches
    work tables
    storage shelves
    spare parts & tools
    work baskets
    truck/van                           (1)               (1)
of equipment & machinery only          $114,000          $139,000
(*)Based on $US 1987 prices. The costs provided are estimates and
are given only to provide a general idea f or machinery costs;
they are not intended to be used as absolute prices. Costs still
need to be determined on a case by case basis.
(*)3.   Materials & Supplies             Small Plant       Medium Plant
     Raw Materials
     denim                              360,000 yards     540,000 yards
     lining                             32,000 yards      45,000 yards
     zippers                            15,000 dozen      23,000 dozen
     size tags                          15,000 dozen      23,000 dozen
     labels                             15,000 dozen     23,000 dozen
     thread (12,000 yd. cones)           4,200 cones       6,000 cones
     buttons                              1,410 gross       2,200 gross
     rivets                              7,500 gross      11,000 gross
     office supplies
     factory supplies
4.    Labor                             Small Plant     Medium Plant
     designer/pattern-maker                1                1
     cutters                               2               3
     operators                            26               36
     pressers                              1                2
     floor help                            6                8
     Unskilled                             4                5
     manager                               1                1
     office                                1                1
     supervisor                            1                2
     mechanic/chauffeur                    1                1
5.   Distribution/Supply flow            Small Plant      Medium Plant
    Amount in/out per day                60 doz.       80-95 doz.
6.   Market Requirements                Small Plant       Medium Plant
              -                       1 million
(*)This includes an approximate amount of materials used over a
period of a year.  It does not mean that a year's supply must be
stored on the premises.
1. Diagram <see plant layout and work flow>

bjx6.gif (600x600)

2. Remarks
Plant layout indicates an orderly f low of work f rom cutting to
finished goods. It should be fairly simple to arrange machines
and operations according to need.  An area should be set aside
for design and pattern making.
Unless otherwise stated, these addresses are in the United
1.   Technical Manuals & Textbooks
Fashion Institute of Technology 7th Ave. and 27th St.
New York, New York 10001
Library and Bookstore with full listing of books on design and
pattern-making, marketing, etc.
Who Puts the Blue in the Jeans? Adventures in the World of Work.
Random House, Inc. 1976. 73 pp.
2.   Periodicals
Women's Wear Daily & Daily News Record
Fairchild Publications
7 E 12th Street
New York, New York 10003
Bobbin Magazine
Bobbin International, Inc.
PO Box 1986
1110 Shop Road
Columbia, South Carolina 29202
Apparel Industries Magazine
180 Allen Street
Atlanta, Georgia 30328
Apparel World
366 Park Avenue, South
New York, New York 10016
3.   Trade Associations
American Apparel Manufacturing Association
2500 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington, Virginia 22201
National Knitwear & Sportswear Association
366 Park Ave., South
New York, New York 10016
4.   Equipment Suppliers, Engineering Companies
Hudson Sewing Machine Co.
109 Johnston St.
Newburgh, New York 12550
(dealer in all types of equipment)
The Singer Company
135 Raritan Center Parkway
Edison, New Jersey 08837
(sewing room equipment, cutting room equipment)
Kurt Salmon Associates
350 Fifth Avenue
New York, New York 10118
(management consultants, consulting services)
5.   Directories
Buyers Guide:
A Source Guide for the Apparel Industry,
produced by The Associate Membership Congress
American Apparel Manufacturers Association
2500 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, Virginia 22201
6.   VITA Resources
VITA has on file a number of documents related to the textile and
apparel industry. For example:
Selected Information Resources on Textiles.  Compiled by J.A.
Feulner, National Referral Center, Library of Congress, May,
1980. 17 pp. XII-E-1, P. 1, 022470, 12.
7. VITA Venture Services
VITA Venture Services, a subsidiary of VITA, provides commercial
services for industrial development. This fee-for-service
includes technology and financial information, technical assistance,
marketing, and joint ventures.  For further information,
contact VITA.

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