APPAREL manufacturer PCCS Group Bhd made the right move four years ago when it decided to handle its own marketing activities, said deputy group general manager Gan Hoe Lian.
“Having depended on agents for so many years, it only made sense for us to deal directly with buyers,” he told StarBiz.
Today, the company has 40 personnel in its in-house sales and marketing departments in Malaysia and Hong Kong, with the latter handling orders for Cambodia and China.
Gan said it was normal for garment and textile-based companies, especially small- and medium-sized ones, to use the service of agents to secure orders from buyers worldwide.
Huge entities would have their own marketing units, he said, adding that this number was small.
Gan said PCCS previously had to depend on agents as it did not have the resources or capacity to set up its own marketing department.
He said by dealing directly with buyers, PCCS found that it understood its clients better and their actual requirements for the orders made where before, the company did not really know who its buyers were.
“Now, we can even discuss with them the choice of fabric, colour, design or style,” he said.
Back then PCCS could not negotiate with agents or buyers on pricing, as the matter was strictly between the agents and buyers, Gan said.
“Agents get commissions from both the manufacturers and buyers and I would say that the money is good,” he said, adding that being able to negotiate on pricing with buyers directly helped the company save on agent commissions.