Images spoke to some of the industry’s key suppliers to discover what plans they have put in place to ensure garment decorators continue to receive the current level of product availability and service in the event of no deal

Mark Colenso, MD of Colenso Screen Services, reports that the company is well prepared: “We have been in negotiation with all our suppliers to ensure they have plans in place. We are also currently increasing stock holdings.” The company is also recommending that customers provide them with forecasts of any potentially unusual orders – for example, if printers will be sampling any inks, colours or special effects that are not within their usual buying patterns, Mark asks that they let them know.

Result Clothing has also been increasing its stock holding, notes managing director David Sanders Smith. He said the company will be able to guarantee stock levels after 29 March “because we have always had, and will always have, anticipatory and well organised systems and procedures in place when it comes to maintaining price points and getting product to market”. With regard to whether there is anything customers can do to help keep services running smoothly, David stated: “Remain loyal to Result, as continued confidence will be rewarded with certainty.”

Regatta Professional has been planning for all Brexit eventualities for more than two years, says assistant marketing manager Megan Pacey. “We have been taking action in order to minimise disruption and ensure continuous supply of our products to all customers.”

Jim Nicol, managing director of TheMagicTouch (TMT), said: “We are very lucky in that we collectively within TMT in Europe hold enough stock for over 18 months’ sales. But we always have since 1992. All our non-EU suppliers are sorted and we don’t envisage any issues. The only factor will be the VAT situation for our Irish customers.” He noted that in his view, speculation about Brexit is fuelling the idea of no deal, “which really is not what we want”.

Roll on 2021

Martin Borley, managing director of Target Transfers, which is part of GroupeStahl, says there will be no shortage of Stahls’ vinyls, printable media or heat presses. He adds: “For those that use custom transfers, we have fully stocked all materials so that anyone in need of screen printed, digital or litho heat-applied transfers will not be affected. And we promise to maintain our two-day turnaround, no matter what happens on 29 March.”

Towel and clothing manufacturer The Cotton Textile Company has warned customers of the potential implications of a no deal on imports from its European supply chains. “World Trade Organisation rules could see a duty tariff being placed on all towelling products and today that is 12%,” it notes. “We will also incur customs clearance charges on all imports and these charges, whatever they end up as, will need to be passed on. At this time there are many unknowns making us unable to be any more specific and we will keep you updated as more information becomes available.”

Sabur Digital has taken on more storage space for stock, reports managing director Dean Sanger. “’Brexit’ has been a word that has haunted the manufacturing supply chain for several months,” he commented. “With many scare stories with regard to imports being thrown at us on a constant daily basis, we have had to take measures to protect not only our business but our customers’ businesses. At the end of the day, if we can’t supply products that they both rely on and need, then they aren’t able to produce and staff will simply be laid off. With this in mind, we have taken on a third satellite unit where we are holding our increased stock levels of sublimation paper and, of course, various inks.” Dean added: “Roll on 2021 when the word ‘Brexit’ will be a distant memory, somewhat similar to the ‘turn of the millennium’. Lots of us in business will remember that date and the scare stories – and believe it or not, the world actually did not end.”