Investment Opportunities: Exploring Vietnam’s Shoe Manufacturing Sector

opportunity shoes industry vietnam

The world of footwear manufacturing is witnessing an exciting shift, with Vietnam emerging as a compelling destination for smart investors seeking lucrative opportunities in the industry.

In this article, we will embark on a journey through Vietnam’s shoe manufacturing sector, uncovering the investment potential it holds and the factors that have propelled Vietnam to the forefront of the global shoe market.

If you want to find reliable shoes and footwear manufacturers, you can have a look at this updated guide containing everything you need to know and an exclusive list of trustworthy footwear factories to make your shoes in Vietnam.

1. Overview of the vietnamese footwear industry

Before delving into investment opportunities, it’s crucial to understand the significance of Vietnam’s footwear industry. The sector has experienced impressive growth, establishing itself as a major global player in footwear production. According to the World Footwear Yearbook 2021, Vietnam consistently ranks among the world’s top exporters and holds over 10% of the global footwear market share.

The country’s strategic location in Southeast Asia provides access to international markets, while skilled labor, favorable government policies, established infrastructure, and efficient logistics fuel growth and ensure timely deliveries worldwide. Vietnam’s manufacturing capabilities and export volumes have significantly contributed to the country’s economic growth and international trade standing.

To understand the untapped potential of this sector, foreign brands or importers should watch this step-by-step video :


1. Economic Landscape and Investment Climate

Vietnam’s economic landscape further bolsters its appeal to  foreign direct investment (FDI) with a GDP growth rate surpassing 2% in 2021 and 8% in 2022, despite the pandemic effect. Additionally, the country’s stable political climate  provides a secure and conducive environment for business ventures. The Vietnamese government actively encourages foreign investment through various initiatives, tax incentives, and streamlined administrative procedures, making the country an investor-friendly destination.

2. Market Trends and Demand

Global market trends favor Vietnam’s shoe manufacturing sector due to the growing demand for fashion-conscious and comfortable footwear. Vietnamese-made shoes have gained popularity as they meet consumers’ needs for versatility and high quality, positioning Vietnam as a key player in the global market.

different type footwear made in vietnam

Moreover, the trend of supply chain diversification has thrust Vietnam into the spotlight. The COVID-19 pandemic exposed the vulnerabilities of relying on a single source for manufacturing, leading to disruptions for businesses concentrated in China, including major brands like Nike, Adidas, and Apple. Consequently, more enterprises are now seeking to reduce their reliance on a single source and turn to Vietnam to optimize their supply chains and benefit from its efficient and cost-effective production capabilities.

3. Cost-Effectiveness and Competitive Advantages

Vietnam’s cost-effectiveness is a significant draw for investors, offering high-quality footwear at lower production costs compared to other manufacturing giants. Labor costs in Vietnam’s manufacturing sector are 50% lower than several other Asian countries, including China, making it an appealing manufacturing hub for investors seeking to minimize expenses and maximize returns.

Vietnamese manufacturers boast a skilled and diligent workforce known for impeccable craftsmanship and attention to detail. The country’s commitment to nurturing a skilled labor force is evident in its high-quality output, earning accolades from global brands. Over 70% of the workforce has completed secondary education or higher, contributing to Vietnam’s competitive advantage in the footwear industry, as highlighted by the Asian Development Bank.

Moreover, Vietnam’s efficient supply chains and excellent infrastructure, ranked among the best in Southeast Asia by the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report, attract investors. 

This advantage, combined with the country’s strategic location, allows businesses to swiftly respond to market demands and efficiently distribute footwear products worldwide.

2. Investment opportunities for foreign importers

Vietnam’s shoe manufacturing sector offers diverse investment opportunities for forward-thinking investors. With remarkable industry growth (footwear exports reaching almost $24 billion in 2022) and cost-effectiveness, potential sectors for investment abound. Thriving demand for athletic footwear, sneakers, and leather shoes provides key areas for investment. Athletic footwear is projected to grow at nearly 5% CAGR, driven by global sports and fitness trends.

manufacturing shoes vietnam

Vietnam’s Sneakers segment is estimated to yield around US$0.53 billion in revenue by 2023, with a 6.01% annual growth rate from 2023 to 2028. The Leather Footwear market is set to reach US$0.64 billion in revenue by 2023, showcasing Vietnam’s proficiency in crafting high-quality leather products. These data-driven opportunities make Vietnam’s shoe manufacturing sector an enticing choice for investors seeking success in the dynamic global market.

3. Challenges and Risk Mitigation 

Sourcing shoe manufacturers in Vietnam poses considerable challenges and risks due to varying production quality, communication issues, logistics complexities, and supply chain disruptions. To ensure success, research potential manufacturers, visit production facilities, and request samples before finalizing partnerships. Clear communication channels and specific quality standards are essential to avoid miscommunication and ensure consistent production quality.

Building long-term relationships with reliable manufacturers and diversifying sourcing options can also enhance efficiency and mitigate risks in shoe manufacturing sourcing in Vietnam.

4. Case Studies and Success Stories

Real-life examples of successful sourcing shoe manufacturers in Vietnam serve as valuable insights for investors seeking profitable outcomes. Companies like Nike, Adidas, Skechers, Clarks, and Vans have established thriving partnerships with Vietnamese manufacturers, leveraging the country’s advantages to achieve remarkable results. Read this news about how Vietnam becomes major manufacturer of Nike sports shoes.

nike factories vietnam

For instance, Nike and Adidas have tapped into Vietnam’s skilled labor and efficient supply chain to produce a significant portion of their footwear products, leading to cost optimization and superior quality.

Similarly, Skechers and Clarks have benefited from Vietnam’s expertise in manufacturing athletic and leather footwear, respectively, enhancing their product offerings. Meanwhile, Vans has successfully capitalized on Vietnam’s manufacturing prowess to produce its iconic sneakers, fueling market growth and brand recognition. 

5. How to effectively find a reliable shoe manufacturers in Vietnam

  • Online Research: Utilize online directories and platforms to identify potential shoe manufacturers in Vietnam. These platforms often provide detailed profiles, product catalogs, and contact information for manufacturers, making it easier to reach out and inquire about their services.
  • Sourcing Agencies: Engage reputable sourcing agencies like Move To Asia or SourcingAgentVietnam.Com that specialize in the Vietnamese market. These agencies have extensive networks and industry knowledge, which can help connect you with reliable and experienced shoe manufacturers in Vietnam.
  • Industry Trade Shows: Attend footwear industry trade shows and exhibitions in Vietnam to meet manufacturers in person and see their products first-hand. Trade shows offer valuable opportunities for networking and building relationships with potential suppliers. 

Vietnam’s market with cost-effectiveness, skilled workforce, and favorable investment climate, has proven itself to be a compelling investment opportunity and a strategic destination for footwear manufacturing.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of The World Financial Review.