Analysis of the innovation potential of the Transylvania Textile & Fashion cluster

At the national level, one of the weaknesses of the light industry is the dependence on the lohn system, which has led to the loss of expertise in own design and to the reduction of the added value of the finished products, and as a threat we mention the aggressive competition of the Asian and European products (in the segment of fashion). This is precisely why two factories were closed in the county. Transylvania Textile & Fashion believes that keeping Romanian producers on the market depends on their ability to introduce product innovation and enter new market segments. Also, the integrated production, the creation and the own brand, the innovation are new production paradigms to which the companies are heading to reposition themselves in a moving market.

The smart development of the light industry in the Central Region in the next period must take into account a strategic reorientation by shifting the focus from high volume and low value added production to innovation based production and at the same time to stimulate the development of design and concept activities and the use of new textile materials. The solid tradition and the knowledge accumulated in the field as well as the high quality of the products represent the strengths of the regional textile industry, these strengths can be doubled by a much better use of the creative resources and of the untapped potential of this field. Better organization of economic actors, including through the formation and development of clusters in this field, would favor the transition to a higher quality stage and would allow the textile, clothing and leather industry to remain among the competitive sectors of the Central Region.

With all this in mind, the Transylvania Textile & Fashion Cluster encourages the companies in the cluster to take into account the principles of circular economy and the Sustainable Development Goals. The concept of circular economy applies to circular systems, rich in feedback. Instead of throwing away the products, components and materials that are manufactured, we have to redirect them to the appropriate supply chains – creating a balanced economy with nature. The circular model is regenerative by design and aims to keep the products, components and materials at the highest utility and value at any time. The Sustainable Development Goals oblige each country to undertake a series of actions that will not only address the root causes of poverty, but will also increase economic growth and prosperity, as well as meeting social, health, education needs while protecting the environment.

In the organized workshops were presented the innovative products of the companies that are members of the cluster and that work on the basis of the principles of circular economy and the Sustainable Development Goals, using textile waste -jeans, curtains, drapes, knitted sweaters and sustainable techniques. In addition, we analyzed the possibilities of collaboration with the ProWood cluster, we identified the main opportunities for the related industries in the textile field: new technologies, IT solutions and potential new markets represent the main opportunities for the industries related to the textile field. Following the workshops and the conclusions of the meetings of the working groups, the following opportunities and threats were identified in the field of textiles and clothing:


– Environmental sustainability for textiles, garments and other textile products

– Modalities and methods of transition from a linear to a circular economy in the textile industry

– New solutions in the field of PLM (Product Life Cycle Management)

– Constant identification of the factors that block innovation

– Increased export of textile goods from the EU to other parts of the globe

– New supply chains

– Technological advances

– Increased use of textile products in technical applications

– Market requirements for high value-added textile products

– Increasing demand for technical textiles

– IT development (information technology)

– Growing interest in production technologies

– Increasing interest in the design of textile products

– Adopting the culture of innovation as one of the company’s values

– Increased investments in innovation activities

– The innovative vision drives the organizational strategy

– Involving customers, suppliers and partners in the innovation process



– Production focused on product assembly (lhon) remained the main activity of several companies, members in the cluster, which due to their small added value closed their gates

– A second very important problem is the lack of skilled or unskilled labor that wants to work in this field

– The job of a dressmaker or a textile maker is not attractive

– Young people are not passionate about this job, do not see the opportunities offered by this field

– Lack of branding and promotion

– High costs

– Lack or low degree of competences of graduates

– Difficulty integration in the labor market

– Increasing the expenses of the economic entities with the specialization of the personnel

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