Today, after having a completely free morning to explore Verona, we visited Mero and More, a textile company that works within the Consorzio Della Moda. The Consorzio itself is an organization that consists of forty six small textile companies in the Venetian region and three 350 when incorporating the entire supply chain of each company. The Consorzio was created in 2000 by five presidents in business firms. Today, those five presidents now serve as the board of directors of this organization. Presently, the forty six companies that make out the Consorzio work together by providing various resources to one another when needed. The sharing of resources opens up several opportunities for emerging small companies that are either unable to start the production of their ideas on their own, or are unable to compete with the larger fast fashion companies such as H&M. The Consorzio helps these companies produce over twenty designs weekly, to keep up with H&M who has hundreds of employees to produce a massive amount of designs. Now the smaller companies will be able to keep up with the quick changes in style similar to how H&M does.
The Consorzio Della Moda is not a producer of any products, but rather an organization that helps various companies in the production of their ideas so they are able to be released into the market and start up their company. Methods such as globalization and commercialization are applied to extend the opportunities of the companies. For example, the Consorzio will provide the proper transportation that a company needs in order to get their product from country A to country B or provide a network for a store to display their product in it. They will provide contacts for a company to network with marketing agencies, which will give them opportunities to get their product advertised in the fashion world. In addition, the Consorzio can connect two separate companies in the same supply chain such as a designer and a styler so they are able to produce a textile. If a company is unable to afford the proper equipment to produce their ideas yet, they can rent out facilities to them. Now they will be able to mass produce their previously unobtainable idea. Sometimes, the Consorzio rather than providing opportunities for companies, educates them so they are able to do the work on their own. A representative advises a company to operate on a strict budget or even outlines projects to improve their idea. For example, the company could be advised on how much fabric to purchase, where to purchase it, what price range to look for, and finally where to focus their marketing and advertisements. Recently, since online shopping is emerging, the Consorzio helps companies create websites to market their new products. Also, the Consorzio has recently started to educate the upcoming youth in textile production because of the decreasing levels of interest. This is done by setting up various textile programs within trade schools throughout Verona. These programs, allow the market for textiles to remain constant or possibly even grow, which is necessary in regard to simulate prices in the market for textiles.
The Consorzio advises differently on production, depending on how the economy is at the time. For example, when the economy was terrible and in a recession in the late 2000’s, companies applied to be a part of the organization to get ideas on how to operate on a lower budget. However, presently, since the economy has been doing quite better and consumption of textiles are gaining, the Consorzio is now advising companies on how to mass produce to acquire the most profit possible. Although, many companies are competitors of one another, they overlook that aspect and know that if they work together they will be better off and make a lot more money. The application to become apart of the Consorzio requires fees that originally will make them financially worse off, however it will pay off in the long run. This is because the Consorzio has a reputation for guiding companies to extreme success, growth, and recognition.
A company in the United States that is similar to the Consorzio is Bellwether Services, a strategic management firm. This organization advises clients on issues such as strategy, operations, and technology. They have served hundreds of businesses as well as government agencies throughout the United States. International trade has been their specialty and what they are primarily known for.
Overall, the visit to Mero and More was different than any of the other visits because of the fact that I had no idea on how it was being helped by a consulting firm. I learned a lot about their company, as well as about the many advantages of joining organizations such as the Consorzio. Day 9 is now complete, and the trip is coming to an end. I wish I were staying longer, but I will live these last few days to the fullest! Ciao!