According to a recent World Footwear report, Poland has become Romania’s main footwear supplier in terms of imports value. Poland surpasses countries such as Italy, China and Slovakia in the ranking, climbing up three places.
The report reveals that Poland delivered 7.7 million pairs of shoes (12% of the total imports) to Romania last year, mounting to USD 140 million (23% of the value).
The World Footwear analysts say that Romania’s footwear import has increased by 37% in 2017, while the imports from Poland have increased more rapidly than any others in the past years.
Romania itself is one of the largest producers and exporters of footwear in Europe, known for its high-quality leather shoes at high prices, around USD 23/pair. As for what Romania is importing on the footwear chapter, most part of the imported shoes are low quality, made of plastic or rubber, for an average price of less than USD 10.
Poland’s strong rise in the imports ranking comes amid a growing number of Polish retailers seizing the local market in terms of clothes and footwear. Brands such as Reserved, CCC and Pepco are strongly represented in Romania through hundreds of stores.
In April this year, Polish footwear retailer CCC announced it had bought a 100% stake in Romanian company Shoe Express for EUR 33 million. Completion of the transaction and transfer of shares in the company has occurred on April 25. The transaction was conducted through CCC’s subsidiary CCC Shoes & Bags.
Shoe Express was previously owned by Peeraj Brands International, comprising all retail outlets operating under the CCC brand in Romania. Previously the outlets were operated by Peeraj Brands International under a franchise agreement with CCC.
Founded in 1999, CCC is the largest footwear retail company in Central Europe and the largest footwear manufacturer in Europe, having stores in Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, Slovakia, Austria, Croatia, Slovenia, Russia, Bulgaria and Serbia, and franchise stores in Romania, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Ukraine.