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, owner of GQ Fashions Great Menswear, seems to be about inventory inside of the store ahead of reopening in Might 2020 right after being forced to shut for the duration of the early times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two many years back, as the COVID-19 pandemic designed its first impact the condition of Oklahoma, Andy Mahbubani had to briefly shut down his family’s clothing retail outlet.

GQ Fashions High-quality Menswear put in the entire thirty day period of April 2020 briefly closed since of the pandemic and Gov. Kevin Stitt’s Safer at House policy that shuttered nonessential company.

When he reopened, Mahbubani concerned that the enterprise wouldn’t have the same amount of good results as ahead of the shutdown the previous two yrs observed double-digit expansion, but GQ Fashions’ enterprise product relies seriously on dressing its clients for situations like weddings, promenade and church products and services. The pandemic struck the functions marketplace just as tough, or even more difficult, than the restaurant business enterprise.

But two years afterwards, the retailer at NW 23 and Interstate 44 is nonetheless open. And according to Mahbubani, it’s been hectic.

“We have seen an uptick in conditions of individuals heading back to activities, likely to events, weddings, men and women are starting up to get married all over again. So yeah, we are performing fairly perfectly essentially,” he explained.

It took a couple months for small business to choose back again up as people felt far more relaxed with substantial gatherings.

The good thing is for Mahbubani, GQ Fashions never ever had the staffing issues that other organizations expert through 2020 and 2021. But 1 dilemma he’s run into consistently is one that is becoming felt throughout the environment — delays in the source chain.

China exported nearly $40 billion well worth of textiles to the United States right before the pandemic manufacturers there typically source the brand names observed in GQ Fashions.

“A little something as straightforward as a black fit or white shirt, you know, had been coming incredibly really hard to uncover,” Mahbubani mentioned.

He’s experimented with to mitigate individuals challenges by buying extra than he wants any time he has the possibility. That’s led to an overstock of 30-40%.

“In truth, I’m storing things in storage units and warehouses. We’re employing no matter what means we can to make guaranteed we have the essential products that men and women will need,” Mahbubani mentioned. “They say ‘make the hay when the solar shines,’ ideal? So when we can get products, we obtain as considerably as we can.”

You can find no indication that the source chain problems will stop anytime before long. Together with the lingering results of the initially big wave of coronavirus that swept via China, shuttering factories and delaying shipments around the globe, a further round of bacterial infections this 12 months has activated a lot more shutdowns in the region with rigorous lockdown procedures employed for that contains the virus.

For instance this month, China ordered a lockdown of the 9 million citizens of the northeastern city of Changchun amid a spike in COVID-19 cases in the area attributed to the extremely contagious omicron variant.

“The persons in the cloth manufacturing facility are performing producing fabric. The people in the accommodate manufacturing unit are functioning making satisfies. But you are unable to get buttons simply because the province where the buttons are made is shut down,” he mentioned. “In actuality, a good deal of our suppliers and suppliers are wanting for methods to get out of China at this position since they’re incredibly strict on their lockdowns.”

Employees author Dale Denwalt covers Oklahoma’s economic system and company information for The Oklahoman. Have a story thought for Dale? He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @denwalt. Guidance Dale’s get the job done and that of other Oklahoman journalists by purchasing a electronic subscription currently at subscribe.oklahoman.com.

This posting initially appeared on Oklahoman: Pandemic’s influence on source chain lingers for OKC clothing retail store