Members of SADA Women’s Cooperative Receive Training on Pricing

The members of the recently-operationalised SADA Women’s Cooperative received training on product pricing from Mr. Ömer Uçtu, Lecturer and Head of the Shoe-Design Department of Naci Topçuoğlu Vocational College of Gaziantep University. Fifty women partners of SADA Women’s Cooperative, workshop trainers and interpreters participated in the training on 5 July 2019.

News | 12 July 2019
In the training, Uçtu explained the importance of building different and original products and reducing costs for firms to survive and thrive in the market. He provided information on how the Cooperative would set the pricing policy, and listed the costs of raw materials, labour, energy and ownership as the cost items that should be considered in pricing the product. Machinery was an important cost in product pricing, and had a life span of 10 to 20 years as each piece of machinery was designed for a specific life, and the annual maintenance and depreciation costs of machinery should be reflected onto the product price. Detailed information was also provided to the participants on how to calculate the hourly cost of machinery and reflect it onto the product price.

Explanation was made as to how to calculate labour costs including the computation of hourly labour cost and how to include it in the product price, and how to reduce the product price after all cost items were included in the price. Accordingly, recommending that the Cooperative should work with at least 5 companies for raw materials procurement, Uçtu said: “The company supplying the raw materials to you may fail to deliver the product on time, or have no products available or go bankrupt. To avoid adverse impacts of such likelihood, you should work with at least five companies.” Noting that using low-energy machinery in production or using high-capacity machinery and reducing labour simultaneously might serve to reducing the product price, Uçtu drew attention to the importance of procuring, at the time of investment, the machinery that would fulfil the optimum production needs and keeping up with technological advances.

Uçtu emphasised the importance of trust in trade; and cautioned that care should be taken to build trust in the market and work with trustworthy companies. He explained what products might be produced for stock building without orders; then answered the questions from participants. Some participants asked how companies were able to sell at more than 50% discount despite their costing. Uçtu replied that brand names already had high prices for their products, and set very high profit margins; therefore, they set high profit rates for their products and made good enough profits at initial batches, thus they would not be at loss no matter how far they applied discounts, and still made profits.

A member of the Cooperative asked what she should do to avoid loss when she purchased the raw material leather at an average price but it later went down. Another member of the Cooperative asked “let us say we produced bags, calculated all costs, but prices went down in the market; what should be do? Should we keep the products in stocks, and place them on the market when prices improve?”, i.e. referring to market fluctuation and consequent impact on product prices. Uçtu responded that when prices fell in the market, products should be sold at prices lowered to cover at least the cost. Pointing to the risk that keeping the products at stock might lead to failure to sell due to product diversity changing according to the fashion; Uçtu recommended that the revenues and expenses of the Cooperative should be regularly calculated, and strategies be developed accordingly. Stressing that companies operating in the informal sector caused unfair competition and gains, Uçtu said that companies in the informal sector incurred 20% less costs of raw materials because they evaded taxes, therefore they were able to sell products at lower prices. With many questions asked and answered on product pricing, costing and identifying cost items, the training was completed successfully.