Tell us about your business, how long has it been running and what’s the story behind it?
Marjomotex was founded in the late 1970s by Jacinto Silva and Fatima Afonso, my parents. The company is as old as I am. When I was born my parents suddenly felt the need to improve their income. My father´s entrepreneurial spirit and my mother’s art of sewing was the beginning of Marjomotex. Initially under individual name and later turned into a business corporation, using the initials letters of the first name of their children, Marco, José and Monica and adding Tex for Textile.
Marjomotex is still family owned in terms of management, values and principles, and we still have one of our fist seamstresses working with us, Beatriz who has been here for over 38 years. Most of our employees have been working with us for over 25 years; daughters are following the tradition and know-how of their mothers, and we have a lot of families under one roof. Over the years we have gained know-how and knowledge of confection techniques and materials.
Are you an integrated mill? Do you produce the fabrics as well as the finished garments?
We are integrated but only for services, not raw materials or special services such as laundry, embroidery, printing. Those services are all sub contracted by our local suppliers. We ensure all other stages are completed such as modelling, cutting, sewing, finishing, ironing and packaging of the garments.
What sort of denim do you specialise in?
We specialise in the production of trousers in materials like denim, 5 pocket pants, jackets and simple blouses. We work with red selvage and denim Tencel. We have the right equipment to adjust materials.
Do you incorporate any other fibres?
We also work a lot with twill, knitwear, velvet, corduroy and waxed fabrics.
Do you specialise in any dying techniques, washes or finishes?
No, we subcontract this type of services in our local suppliers, they are specialised.
How are you dealing with the sustainability issues surrounding the denim industry?
We are very concerned and are moving towards sustainability. An important step was the GOTS certification which we received in December last year. Besides this certification, we started also reusing leftover fabrics and producing bags, small credit card pockets and key-rings.
We are also in the process of the construction of new sustainable industrial facilities. The new facilities include solar panels, as energy use is one of the most important issues in this sector. The sun is free, and we do have plenty of it in Portugal! We also plan to harvest water to use later for the boilers.
How do you see denim moving into the future? What technological or design strategies are you implementing for your customers and the future of denim?
Denim will never disappear, and it is very much in use again. We are always trying to turn our production and consumption of raw materials to becomore sustainable. Besides the concerns with the future, we are always seeking to improve and adapt to customer needs.
Have customers become more demanding of suppliers? What have the core changes been in this relationship?
The costumers are more and more demanding and careful when choosing suppliers. High quality standards and on-time delivery are the key to success.
What advice would you give sourcing professionals looking for a manufacturer?
Choose Portugal for your production! Portugal has tradition in the textile sector and is very competitive. We also have been elected for one of the best travel destinations, so why shouldn´t you mix work and pleasure whilst visiting our country?
How can manufacturers and sourcing professionals improve their relationships?
Get to know each other and your workplaces, it is especially important to get to know the people who manage to combine agility with perfection to create high quality products.