Clothiers tapping the domestic market do better than exporters

The year 2004 was a particularly hard one for the clothing sector in Greece, according to market professionals and companies’ financial report data. For the first time, there was a decline in the industry’s turnover by 1.1 percent from 2003, while the decline in net profits continued. Even more negative was the performance of the smaller and exporting-only companies, according to data published by the Hellenic Fashion Industry Association (SEPEE), based on financial reports of 200 clothing enterprises. In 2004, the total sector turnover fell to 1.52 billion euros from 1.54 billion euros in 2003, while the overall net pretax profit dropped by 11.6 percent yearly, from 82.8 million euros in 2003 to 71.6 million euros in 2004. The bigger players, which have chosen the domestic market and have their own sales networks, did best. For the third successive year, these firms showed a 4.6 percent rise in turnover against exporters which declined by 10.6 percent after a 0.7 percent rise in 2003. Domestic market firms saw their profits rise by 2.7 percent, reaching 79.28 million euros in total, while exporters incurred losses of 6.61 million euros against profits of 5.05 million euros in 2003. Based on turnover, the biggest companies in 2004 were Hadzioannou Holdings (with a 6.5 rise), Fanco (declining by 47.4 percent) and Fiera (dropping by 12.2 percent).