For GQ Fashions in OKC, business is back, but pandemic’s effect on supply chain lingers


Andy Mahbubani, owner of GQ Fashions Fine Menswear, looks over inventory inside the store before reopening in May 2020 after being forced to close during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Andy Mahbubani, operator of GQ Fashions Good Menswear, appears to be like over inventory inside of the retail store before reopening in May 2020 immediately after staying pressured to near for the duration of the early times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two many years ago, as the COVID-19 pandemic manufactured its to start with impression the condition of Oklahoma, Andy Mahbubani experienced to temporarily shut down his family’s garments retailer.

GQ Fashions Fine Menswear put in the whole thirty day period of April 2020 quickly shut because of the pandemic and Gov. Kevin Stitt’s Safer at House coverage that shuttered nonessential enterprise.

When he reopened, Mahbubani nervous that the business enterprise wouldn’t have the exact degree of achievements as prior to the shutdown the prior two years observed double-digit growth, but GQ Fashions’ business design relies closely on dressing its shoppers for functions like weddings, promenade and church providers. The pandemic struck the occasions sector just as tricky, or even tougher, than the cafe company.

But two decades later, the store at NW 23 and Interstate 44 is nevertheless open up. And according to Mahbubani, it’s been hectic.

“We have noticed an uptick in terms of men and women likely again to functions, heading to parties, weddings, persons are starting up to get married once more. So yeah, we’re carrying out pretty well in fact,” he reported.

It took a handful of months for business enterprise to decide on back again up as individuals felt a lot more relaxed with substantial gatherings.

Fortunately for Mahbubani, GQ Fashions under no circumstances had the staffing problems that other organizations knowledgeable all through 2020 and 2021. But one particular trouble he’s run into continually is one which is currently being felt throughout the world — delays in the supply chain.

China exported pretty much $40 billion really worth of textiles to the United States right before the pandemic suppliers there often offer the brands discovered in GQ Fashions.

“A little something as uncomplicated as a black go well with or white shirt, you know, were being coming extremely challenging to discover,” Mahbubani stated.

He is experimented with to mitigate those people problems by buying a lot more than he requirements anytime he has the chance. That’s led to an overstock of 30-40%.

“In truth, I’m storing things in storage models and warehouses. We’re using whichever assets we can to make certain we have the simple items that folks will need,” Mahbubani explained. “They say ‘make the hay when the solar shines,’ suitable? So when we can get goods, we acquire as much as we can.”

There is no sign that the supply chain challenges will finish at any time quickly. Alongside with the lingering consequences of the very first big wave of coronavirus that swept by means of China, shuttering factories and delaying shipments around the globe, a different spherical of bacterial infections this year has induced additional shutdowns in the nation with strict lockdown procedures utilised for containing the virus.

For instance this month, China purchased a lockdown of the 9 million residents of the northeastern town of Changchun amid a spike in COVID-19 instances in the region attributed to the remarkably contagious omicron variant.

“The men and women in the material manufacturing facility are doing the job generating cloth. The people today in the go well with manufacturing unit are operating producing suits. But you can not get buttons because the province exactly where the buttons are built is shut down,” he said. “In actuality, a lot of our manufacturers and sellers are hunting for approaches to get out of China at this issue because they are really stringent on their lockdowns.”

Staff writer Dale Denwalt addresses Oklahoma’s economic system and company news for The Oklahoman. Have a tale plan for Dale? He can be arrived at at [email protected] or on Twitter at @denwalt. Assist Dale’s work and that of other Oklahoman journalists by obtaining a electronic subscription nowadays at subscribe.oklahoman.com.

This post initially appeared on Oklahoman: Pandemic’s result on source chain lingers for OKC clothing retail outlet



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