APLF 2015 (Asia Pacific Leather Fair) has exceeded expectations from all 30 tanneries that, along with the Centre for the Brazilian Tanning Industry (CICB), participated at the world’s largest trade fair within the leather sector. This year the event took place between March 30th and April 1st, in Hong Kong. Even if the current economic scenario anticipated an environment with more cautious visitors, Brazilian companies exhibiting their products were unanimous in commenting their impressions about the event: APLF 2015 brought highly satisfactory results.
Asia Pacific Leather Fair is widely known as an event to create closer ties between suppliers and their international clients, several leather producing companies from Brazil say this year’s edition brought them business opportunities with new buyers. According to executive president of CICB, José Fernando Bello, there is a real expectation that negotiations carried out during the event bring around US$ 400 million to the sector throughout 2015. “APLF always is a moment eagerly awaited by the sector. Sales this year show that, besides the challenges presented by global economy, Brazilian leather exports will continue to grow, since this is an event that dictates which paths the segment will be taking during the following year”, says Bello.
Companies exhibiting leather made in Brazil at APLF 2015 are part of the actions promoted by Brazilian Leather – a sectoral project focused on stimulating leather exports, and developed by CICB in partnership with the Brazilian Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (Apex-Brasil).
It is also important to notice that, during APLF 2015, and represented by CICB, the Brazilian leather sector took part in meetings of the International Council of Tanners (ICT) and the Global Leather Coordinating Comitee (GLCC). Before the event, there was also the APLF preparatory meeting, which counted with the presence of all exhibiting tanneries.
Apex-Brasil at the preparatory meeting – Besides information from the current leather market in Asia and the importance of APLF in the international leather market, tanneries were also able to learn at the 2015 preparatory meeting about the relentless Chinese economy. After all, the Chief of Operations at Apex-Brasil Beijing Office, César Yu, presented a series of particularities regarding the country’s economy. According to Yu, China, as opposed to other countries that face economic downturns, foresees a growth of 7% in 2015. The Chief of Operations at Apex-Brasil Beijing Office also says that the expectation, besides being lower that previous years, may be highly positive for Brazilian leather suppliers. “The middle class has been expanding in China. The search for products with a luxury appeal has been growing. Therefore, the consumption of articles made of leather should also increase, since it is considered to be a noble material”, said César Yu.
In activity since 2009, Apex-Brasil Beijing Office is focused on consolidating Brazilian products in China. Within the scope of the office is the assistance to companies that aim at prospecting new markets and the support for planning products distribution in the country, among other actions.
Product highlights – Because it attracts worldwide attention, APLF is where companies make the most to consolidate and present new products. See below the highlights from every Brazilian exhibitor:
Agro Latina Ltda: Wet-blue and semi-finished producer, the tannery offered its articles essentially to the furniture and automotive segments – the biggest buyers of the company’s products in China.
Alexander Rep. Ltda: From basic articles in wet-blue to finished leather with high aggregate value, Alexander Rep. Ltda aimed at presenting options to all visitors. Even so, they made sure to highlight bovine leather with snake prints, as well as pirarucu and rabbit skins.
America Leather Ltda: The Chinese upholstery sector absorbs 60% of business dealt by America Leather Ltda. Therefore, this was the company’s focus and highlight at this year’s APLF.
Apucarana Leather S/A: A soft touch material, perfect for the production of handbags, napa cross leather was one of the articles highlighted by Apucarana Leather S/A. Nearly half of the company’s exports have China as their destination – most of it goes to Guangdong, a region recognized for the wide production of women articles.
Brazil Rugs: Hair-on leather that may be used on the most diverse decorative pieces, including artworks: this was the line highlighted by Brazil Rugs, which participated at APLF for the first time.
CBR Group – Couros Bom Retiro: The most comfortable shoes one will find are sure made with floater, the material presented by the company at APLF 2015.
Coming Ind. Com. de Couros Ltda: Traditionally, Coming has in China a big client: 40% of the company’s leather is destined to the furniture and automotive segments in the country, and which received the brand’s total attention during the event.
Cortume Krumenauer: Manually finished leather, and leather bringing natural effects, were the articles presented by Curtume Krumenauer. The company sees APLF as the fair to better learn new trends in handbags and artifacts.
Couro e Arte: Hair-on bovine leather rugs with no sewing were the articles used by Couro e Arte do attract visitors at APLF. Leather bringing artisanal finishings, and made individually, were also highlighted by the company, which exhibited for the first time at the event.
Couro do Norte Ltda: To make raw material available for Chinese footwear and upholstery industries was the company’s objective at APLF. In fact, Couro do Norte says they closed highly positive businesses at this year’s editon.
Courovale: Metalized effects, tones of grey and off-white were highlights among the finished leather presented by Courovale at the world’s largest leather fair.
Curtume A.P. Muller Ltda: The company took the opportunity to announce its chrome-freeline, which, according to director Cezar Muller, was well accepted and even praised by visitors.
Curtume Cacique Ltda: As well as other Brazilian suppliers, Curtume Cacique Ltda supplies to the Chinese automotive and furniture industries, that apply wet-blue and semi-finished leather especially on upholstery.
Curtume Cubatão Ltda: Classic colors such as black and grey prevailed among the brand’s products, since it exhibited its products mainly to the automotive sector.
Curtume Della Torre Ltda: Finished greased leather with vintage effects made up the lines highlighted by the company, recognized for its products of high aggregate value.
Curtume Ideal: Well satisfied with this year’s APLF, Curtume Ideal focused on offering its raw material to three Chinese markets: footwear, furniture, and automotive.
Curtume Nimo Ltda: With good perspectives regarding post-fair business, the company presented its articles to several different Chinese industries, already a traditional buyer.
Durlicouros Indústria e Comércio de Couros Ltda: The footwear and artifact segments, as well as the furniture and automotive sectors, are traditional clients of the brand in China. Durlicouros took the opportunity to strengthen its relations with local buyers.
Fuga Couros: Options presented by the company at APLF went from wet-blue to crust and finished leather, since the tannery’s idea is to always serve every market’s needs.
Gobba Leather Indústria e Comércio Ltda: High end products were proudly exhibited by the company at the fair in Hong Kong – an event, in fact, described by Gobba as a moment of “updating” and “strengthening" relations with clients”.
H.Y. Leatherex: Also exhibiting at APLF with a focus on the furniture and automotive segments, H.Y. Leatherex defined the event as “enjoyable”.
Hason International: Hason International’s proposal was to present solutions for all kinds of demands.
Induspan Ind. e Com. de Couroa Pantanal Ltda: In its first tanning stages, leather may also have several destinations for the industry. Induspan brought wet-blue and crust to a market in need of the raw material.
Indústria de Peles Minuano Ltda: Devour and dyed skins were the company’s highlights. Minuano believes that the brand’s exposure at APLF ensures clients fidelity.
JBS Couros: All kinds of leather were presented by the company. Finished articles were among the highlights.
Kromática Indústria e Comércio de Produtos Químicos Ltda: Specialized in hair-in hides, it also took to APLF a variety of silk screen on leather.
Senai: Senai presented to the audience present at Asian Pacific Leather Fairits technical services in laboratory, research, and courses.
Lenemur Ind. de Couros Ltda: Participating at APLF is fundamental for Lenemur, that has in China its major buyer, with 95% of the company’s leather exports.
Liderkoll Ltda: Leather presented by the company is used on upholstery and for footwear manufacturing in China.
Luiz Fuga Indústria de Couros Ltda: In order to catch buyer’s attention the tannery presented greasy and waxy finished leather, which end up having a very attractive visual effect.
Minerva S/A: At APLF 2015, Minerva tried a new proposal that proved well: it took leather samples to be presented to the automotive sector, a segment that is not really its focus. The idea seems to have pleased buyers.
Natur Indústria de Couros Ltda: Perforated and nobuck finished leather are both trends that appeared among the lines brought by the brand to APLF.
Nova Kaeru Exotic Leathers: At the Chinese event, the Brazilian tannery focused on its skin fusion technology, an innovation patented by the company and that allows the combination of skins from different fish in one single article.
Pacific Leather Imp. e Exp. Ltda: In order to provide for the production of the most diverse leather products, the company deals wet-blue, crust and finished articles from a series of major Brazilian producers.
Partner Ind. e Com. de Couros Ltda: Also a supplier of leather in all its different stages, Partner already exports 30% of its production to China.
Union Leather & Ritti Imp. Exp.: Thicker nobucks were the highlights taken by the company to Hong Kong. According to Union, this kind of bolder material is much appreciated for the production of men belts and shoes.