World Footwear


Pressure on the cost of materials continues to rank as the main difficulty for the business

Pressure on the cost of materials continues to rank as the main difficulty for the business
In the latest edition of the World Footwear Business Conditions Survey, 46% of the surveyed experts listed the cost of merchandise and raw materials as the number one difficulty for footwear businesses in the next six months

The expectation of price increases revealed in the latest edition of the World Footwear Business Conditions Survey (READ MORE HERE) is primarily attributed to the mounting pressure on the cost of materials. This concern is highlighted by 46% of our respondents, ranking as one of the top three main difficulties for footwear businesses in the next six months and leading the list in this survey edition. While this concern is prevalent across all geographies, it is notably acute in Africa and Asia.

Competition in domestic markets and financial difficulties, cited by 36% and 35% of respondents, respectively, are the second and third most significant sources of concern for footwear businesses. Insufficient demand in domestic markets follows, posing a challenge to over one-quarter of our respondents, along with insufficient demand and competition in international markets (21%). Human resources-related problems remain a significant cause of concern for 21% of respondents, particularly in Europe and North America.

Taxes have moved up several positions in this list since the last survey editions, with 20% of respondents mentioning them as a source of concern. 

On the contrary, issues such as the lack of adequate equipment or other technological problems, regulatory or administrative requirements, legal or administrative obstacles to international trade, and climate concerns do not surpass 10% of responses.

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Executive Summary
Business Context
Health of the Business
Employment Level
Retail Channels
Expectations about the Evolution of Footwear Consumption in 2024
Footwear Consumption to Increase 9.5% in 2024
Impact of COVID-19 on the Location of Footwear Production
About Survey

About the Survey

In 2019 the World Footwear has created the World Footwear Experts Panel and is now conducting a Business Conditions Survey every semester.

The objective of the World Footwear Experts Panel Survey is to collect information regarding the current business conditions within the worldwide footwear markets and disseminate this information to provide an accurate overview of the situation of the global footwear industry.

The ninth edition of this online survey was conducted during the month of November 2023. 

We have obtained 118 valid answers, 41% from Asia, 32% from Africa, 18% from Europe, 6% from North America and 4% South America. About 40% of respondents are involved in footwear manufacturing (manufacturers) or footwear trade and distribution (traders) and the other 60% in other footwear-related activities, including education and research (14%), trade associations (12%), consultancy (9%) and other activities (25%).

Previous Editions of this Bulletin can be found HERE