SUNBIZ

Analysis

John Ross is a Nadi-based marketing and advertising specialist with a long background in tourism. For feedback on this article, please email him: johnrossfiji@gmail.com   With Fiji moving rapidly into
18 Feb 2017 11:00
Analysis
There are others going through the same process and the fashion scene in Fiji is becoming an exciting and vibrant place for new designer.

John Ross is a Nadi-based marketing and advertising specialist with a long background in tourism. For feedback on this article, please email him: johnrossfiji@gmail.com

 

With Fiji moving rapidly into first world country status and increasing affluence, particularly amongst the under 35 age group women who are now moving into middle management positions in many of the larger and more active companies in the country, a number of areas of opportunity are opening up for ambitious young people.

The new local executive group has a significant number of women who have travelled and seen the sort of lifestyle their counterparts in other countries enjoy, and they want to be able to access the products and services in Fiji.

Young adults are now starting their own businesses on the back of this demand and are entering the services area with beauty care and hair care outlets, upmarket housekeeping services and personal buying and child care concepts.

Although the later are small in number at present, the growing demand will see significant increases in the number of businesses involved.

Another sector of the market that is seeing significant increases is the designer clothing industry.              Here there is an opportunity for talented young designers, both male and female, to economically enter the business segment and to try to build a name for themselves.             They take advantage of the manufacturing companies who are now prepared to accept small volume orders and make to individual designs.

The larger clothing companies make their profits out of large, long run orders but they still have some downtime and they prefer to find the small volume work so they can keep their staff employed, rather than putting them on limited hours and take the risk  of having them find full time employment somewhere else.

This arrangement suits the young designers, the large manufacturers and their staff, but it needs careful planning and attention to detail to make it work smoothly.

There are an increasing number of new businesses started by young people that have the ability to do this.

One new entrant into the designer market is Priya Maharaj, a resident in Nadi. She is married and has two young children.

As a single woman she started her business career in Suva working for the international advertising agency M&C Saatchi  as an account executive, handling several leading product brands and learning rapidly on the job about marketing and media communications, two areas of expertise that have given her a strong foundation on which to build her latest venture.

She went to New Zealand and worked for the New Zealand Herald in their advertising department and later in the loyalty programme section.

She moved to Regency Duty Free, one of the country’s largest and most active duty free operators, with both ground based and in-flight operations.

Again she learnt a great deal about the marketing and promotion of up market, high quality merchandise and about targeted marketing.

From there she moved to Singapore and again spent time in quality product marketing.

Her distribution is still limited but is expanding and she plans to now concentrate on a serious marketing effort to expand the awareness for her brand and to reach a wider market, although with the store front distribution she plans to stay concentrated on Lautoka, Nadi and Suva.

She has a good representation in Pineapple Boutique in the Sheraton and Port Denarau.

She is also planning to develop an on-line shopping range and use her experience in the loyalty promotion field to reach a much targeted audience.

Priya markets her fashion range under the” 2 frangipanis” label, using flower icons created by her two young daughters.

There are others going through the same process and the fashion scene in Fiji is becoming an exciting and vibrant place for new designers.

This is possible because of the significant economic growth in Fiji in the last few years and the increase in income levels for the younger executive market.

And the influence these young designers have on the Fiji fashion environment will continue to increase



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