ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Nearly 125 textile services industry executives from linen and uniform supply companies from 15 countries are pre-registered for the World Textile Services Congress (WTSC), being held from October 5-7 in Bruges, Belgium. WTSC organizers expect a larger final attendance count as laundry operators participate to learn about business opportunities common to the industry in every nation.
Representatives of more than 60 textile services companies will be joined by personnel from 14 event sponsors (suppliers to the industry) to share education, networking and social events. Discussions of economic, political and legal trends will inspire attendees to improve company strategies. Presentations by laundry executives will provide ideas to enhance everyday business practices to immediately increase profitability. In the evening hours, participants will enjoy food and drink with other WTSC delegates as they explore Bruges, with its canals, cobbled streets and medieval buildings.
Co-sponsors are the European Textile Services Association (ETSA) and two national associations, FBT (Belgium) and TRSA (United States).
The event begins Oct. 5 (Wednesday) when the Boards of Directors of seven participating national associations meet during the day. Board members will participate in social activities that evening.
Keynote presentations are Oct. 6 (Thursday):
- Herman Van Rompuy, 2010 to 2014 European Council president, the master negotiator who facilitated cooperation among Eurozone countries to help Greece (and later Ireland and Portugal) stabilize borrowing costs while preventing economic contagion throughout the EU.
- Marc Herremans, the World Champion Ironman triathlete whose strong spirit and dedication did not stop him when he became disabled when training accident. He became an exceptional wheelchair athlete, coach and philanthropist.
- Dominique Persoone, the “Shock-o-Latier,” who is revolutionizing the chocolate industry by collaborating with scientists to uncover new flavor combinations. His business is a case study in differentiating from competition and approaching everyday operations with a “rock and roll” perspective.
Thursday’s agenda also includes panel discussions featuring textile services executives from across the globe who will discuss:
Corporate Social Responsibility. Laundries everywhere can increase revenues by promoting the industry’s increasing contributions to customers’ sustainability, cost control and image. Other industries will be discussed as good models for our industry to become recognized for its good works.
Global Trends Overview. Learn about revenue-building and cost-control techniques to address challenges common to laundry companies around the world due to regulation, globalization and competition. There will be discussion of supply and demand for key products required for your business such as textiles, energy, chemicals, electronics and more. Legal and ethical constraints, especially regarding environment, safety and health, will be discussed.
Textile Services Market Dynamics. Launderers in every nation are faced with a different combination of challenges to profitability based on market conditions. Participants on this panel will explain how laundry performance in their countries s affected by supply concentration (chain vs. independent laundries), demographics (population, workforce), economic mix by industry (product- vs. service-producing) and supply costs.
On Friday morning, executives participating in the WTSC will visit two nearby laundries, observing how Belgian plant operators achieve high productivity and efficiency. Participants have a choice of healthcare, hospitality or workwear laundries, stating their preferences at registration. TRSA is offering a laundry tour before the WTSC beginning in Brussels on Tuesday, October 2 and arriving in Bruges on Wednesday.