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Sourcing Agent Easy Imex Sees 62 Percent Increase On China Exports Despite COVID-19

The increase in overall sales this year is due to rising demand for furniture, home improvements, and home gym equipment

SHANGHAI, CHINA, November 16, 2020 / -- • Professional China sourcing agent Easy Imex has seen its exports go up due to the boom in ecommerce
• In recent months, the company has also seen a change of consumer habits, particularly the increase in demand for home improvement items
• Because of limited manufacturing capacity, the prices of raw materials are also increasing

Rarely have supply chain managers faced more complex, changing conditions than they have in 2020. In spite of the challenges brought about the COVID-19 pandemic, Shanghai-based sourcing agent Easy Imex has seen a 62 percent increase in overall sales. The increase is due to the boom in ecommerce and, more importantly, the rising consumer demand for furniture, home improvements, and home gym equipment in recent months.

Throughout the past few months, Easy Imex has seen firsthand how the coronavirus and its effects have affected their business. When COVID-19 broke out in January, all attention was on China. Companies that relied on China for their physical goods asked “Can you produce?” After a short and very strict lockdown in Q1 2020, most manufacturers in China were operating at a relatively normal pace, free from major COVID-19 restrictions.

But as the coronavirus started to spread around the world, many purchasing orders were not made or placed due to fears of a drop in demand. However, with millions of people still staying, working, and studying at home, consumer spending has shifted dramatically. One of the beneficiaries of this phenomena is home improvements such as furniture and homeware.

“As consumers continue to stay at home and businesses work remotely, we have seen an increase in demand for items needed to make their home more comfortable,” said Easy Imex founder Adam Gilbourne. The sourcing agent has also seen a ‘higher than normal’ demand in ecommerce.

Capacity issues

On a factory floor level, factories in China were very cautious in Q1 and Q2 2020 that export demand might drop. “Because of COVID-19 restrictions and a cautious outlook, many factories did not look to dramatically increase their production. In fact, many even went the other way, bringing in less workforce and ordering less raw materials,” said Gilbourne.

As lockdowns started to ease in Q3 and more orders were being placed, factory lead times started getting longer and longer. This led to lead times going from the standard 30 days to 60, 90, or 120 days or even more than six months. For businesses in the West that need physical product to run, having to predict demand can often be difficult. Unfortunately, forecasts have to be done much further in advance as a result of growing lead times.

One of the factors adding up to lead times in supply chains is Chinese New Year. It is the one time of the year when China “stops.” And so, come the end of the year, there is often a rush to place orders so they can be manufactured and exported before the significant Chinese holiday.

Fast-track to the end of 2020, and with a sharp increase in orders, many factories have now hit full capacity. “If you place an order now, the manufacturer may start production sometime in April, May, or June 2021,” said Gilbourne.

Material prices

The current economic climate and the spike in purchasing has had an effect all the way down the supply chain to raw materials in China. “When there is not enough supply to meet demand, prices go up. It is basic economics, and it has caught a lot of our buyers by surprise,” said Gilbourne.

Find more information on how to import from China at

About Easy Imex

Easy Imex is a UK-owned professional sourcing company based in Shanghai. The company offers a one-stop solution to foreign importers purchasing in China, from sourcing suppliers to negotiation, quality assurance, quality control, and shipping.

Adam Gilbourne
Easy Imex
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