Interview with Chris Chang

Face2Face
Chris Chang
Chris Chang
Managing Director
DS-Concept
DS-Concept

About 70 per cent of our apparel & textile clientele is based in Asia

DS-Concept, an international trade financing expert, supplies factoring facility to apparel companies for easy-to-manage accounts. Chris Chang, managing director, DS-Concept USA and China, shares insights on global factoring practices with Fibre2Fashion.com

What exactly do you offer? Please explain your programme.

DS-Concept provides powerful, new and innovative international cash flow solutions, tailored for global clients. Focused on the small and mid-market, our core product is non-recourse export factoring. With emphasis on eliminating trade risk, our non-recourse export factoring allows clients to leverage an often unutilised asset, their international accounts receivable, free up cash flow for other endeavours and continue to grow their business. While DS-Concept provides each client with a unique, tailor-made solution based on location, products, customers and payment terms, funding is fairly simple and straightforward. There are three steps: 1. DS-Concept inspects the creditworthiness of the client's international customers. 2. DS-Concept buys receivables from the client's export business, and pays them the advance amount (typically, upon shipment). 3. DS-Concept handles the management of the client's accounts receivable as well as the complete dunning process. Because we offer non-recourse financing, we provide 100 per cent insurance against deficit or shortfall of payment, should our client's customer not pay due to insolvency. In addition to export factoring, DS-Concept offers import and supply chain financing.

What percentage of your overall clientele comprises the textile vertical? What specific segments in the textile and apparel industry avail your facility?

Our company has its origins in the financing of the Turkish textile trade, so the textile and apparel industry continues to play a major role in our business. Currently, we work with many textile and apparel producers and traders in many countries including China, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Turkey and Vietnam. The apparel and textile sector currently makes up about 40 per cent of our firm's portfolio. DS-Concept is industry agnostic. We finance a wide variety of industries and products. The majority of our clients in the textile and apparel sector are exporting readymade garments or home textiles. Typically, these exporters sell to major retailers and wholesalers in the United States of America, Europe and the Middle East.

What are the common obstacles faced by textile and apparel companies in managing cash flow?

The most common obstacle an exporter faces is the increasingly long payment terms requested by major buyers. As payment terms go from 60 to 90 days and even 120 days in some cases, it becomes increasingly difficult for the exporter to invest in day-to-day operations and virtually impossible to invest in the growth of the company. Costs of raw materials, marketing expenses, R&D, hiring staff and opening a new facility are challenging tasks when the exporter's cash is tied up in international open accounts receivable.
Published on: 19/04/2016

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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