Chinese tanning and footwear group has said demand for boots with double-face uppers in China has slowed down and that a huge investment it made in direct soling technology from Desma in Germany in 2014 is running well, but not at full capacity.
Desma’s technology allows Henan Prosper to inject polyurethane and thermoplastic polyurethane soles straight onto uppers in a highly automated production line. Within three years of installing the technology in mid-2014, the company said it hoped to produce 2.5 million pairs of boots with double-face uppers per year and another 2.5 million pairs of shoes using the Desma technology. It said at the time that it was almost hitting the double-face target already, with around 50% of the boots being produced for Deckers’ UGG brand and the rest under its own Cozy Steps brand, which is only for the Chinese market.
Senior members of the management team at Henan Prosper’s footwear business unit told Leatherbiz that production of the boots is running at around 1.2 million pairs per year and that it is waiting for demand to pick up in China before putting all of its Desma technology into operation.