Shein on Brazilian Land How Billionaires Expand Fashion Empires in the Country!

Shein expands fashion empire in Brazil with billionaire support

Business Dialogue has learned that fast fashion giant Shein is increasing production in Brazil, with 100 factories already producing products for the online retailer since announcing plans to invest $148 million in the country a month ago.

Marcelo Claure, chairman of Shein in the region and a shareholder in the company, said expanding production outside of China and embracing the rapid growth of Latin America is part of a larger plan.

“I am investing in companies that I can help,” Claure said in an interview with Bloomberg News. “Shein is the type of company I am looking for, a global and highly disruptive company.”

Shein currently produces almost all of its products in China, but sells almost no products to Chinese customers. The company is seeking to locate production in rapidly growing regions to lower distribution costs and speed up delivery times. In April, the company said it would partner with 2,000 Brazilian textile factories over the next five years and announced similar plans in India and Turkey.

“Latin America plays an important role in Shein’s revenue. It is definitely one of the fastest growing regions in the world,” said Claure, who invested $100 million in the company. He also noted that the retailer’s app is one of the most downloaded apps in Brazil.

Investment in Shein’s New Phase

Claure, 52, served as SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son’s right-hand man until January 2022, when he left the Japanese investment firm due to a pay dispute. As COO of SoftBank, he led the company’s turnaround efforts for several Vision Fund investments, including Sprint (now T-Mobile US Inc) and WeWork.

Claure was born in Guatemala. His parents were Bolivian and later moved to Massachusetts in the United States for college. After graduation, he had the opportunity to buy a mobile phone store, which gave rise to the global telecommunications equipment supplier Brightstar, which he sold to SoftBank a decade ago.

Since his relationship with Masayoshi Son broke down, Claure has been conducting business through his family office, Claure Group. Last year, he set up a department within the company called Claure Capital, which focuses on public and private investment.

Claure Group manages $3.3 billion and will invest in Latin American companies that are “disrupting traditional business models,” Claure said. Shein, headquartered in Singapore, is Claure’s first significant investment since the spinoff from SoftBank.

Although Shein has been praised for its fast-growing business model, it has also come under scrutiny for poor factory conditions and a large carbon footprint.

Claure said that before investing in Shein, he traveled to China for two weeks, spoke with workers, and visited the factories where Shein outsources production. He added that Shein has “very clear rules” on wages, labor and material supply, and Brazil will replicate the model used in China.

“Seeing people satisfied with Shein is reassuring,” Claure said.

Editor ✎ Estella/AMZ123

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