This year, Cross Jeans has every reason to celebrate: the brand celebrates its 20th birthday in the German market. About two decades ago, the story of the label started with the opening of its headquarter in Berlin, followed by the first flagship store in 2007.  Today 1,000 POS exist in Germany and 2,000 throughout Europe. In this Interview, Cross CEO Ersin Binicioglu talks about milestones, challenges and visions. Interview by Melanie Gropler

Cross Jeans is celebrating a special birthday this year: 20 years, being successful as a producer and as a label at the same time. What were the milestones of the company?

In 1995, two decades ago, we started with Cross Jeans in Berlin. At that time it wasn’t easy for the textiles market, but by adopting the principles of our corporate philosophy and our price policy, Cross jeans was able to position itself in the German market very quickly. The customer acquisition in Germany and the expansion into other European countries like Austria, Switzerland, Benelux or the Netherlands was constantly and gradually progressing. We quickly set up an effective distribution system, we are known for delivering fast and reliably and our large and reliable NOS basement is the key for our success. Surely our price-quality ratio also contributed to our positioning, as well as the positive collaboration with our customers. In 2007 we opened our flagship store in Berlin-Mitte. We present our portfolio at the trade fairs since 1995, at that times at Interjeans, later at the Bread & Butter. This year, our Spring Summer 2016 Collection will also be represented at Panorama Berlin for the very first time.
Well, and it’s all about being able to react to the market developments fast and effectively.  We experienced very diverse developments of the denim market. The globalization has reached the industry and we face entrepreneurial decisions with European approaches from Berlin.

How is Cross Jeans celebrating its anniversary?
This birthday is something very special and we want to celebrate it together with our partners and customers. That’s why we bring our limited Anniversary Edition “Cross Jeans 20 years in Germany” to the market. Our top-fits “Melissa” and “Antonio” will inspire with new design adaptions, details and special finishes. In addition, we will start our “Cross Jeans Days” throughout Germany in October. Together with our partners, customers and fashion bloggers, we present our Cross Jeans Styles in connection with handcraft and design directly in the stores. Obviously our “Cross Jeans Days” are events to celebrate our anniversary together with our customers.

Cross Jeans
Cross Jeans
How would you assess the current situation of the fair trades?
I don’t think the trend towards growing supply is a positive development because it takes far more time and energy to analyse the market. This splitting makes the work of the customers and retailers more difficult. Surely it would be more efficient to pool all fair trades under one roof.

How is Cross Jeans positioned? What’s your strongest market? Where’s the return made? What are your plans concerning expansion?
Our customers come from nearly all market sectors: retail business, key accounts and e-commerce. In Germany, we are present with more than 1,000 POS, in Europe with more than 2,000 points of sale. Our expansion plans are focused towards Asia and the Nordic states.

What are the major challenges at the moment – firstly for Cross Jeans and secondly for the entire industry?
One great challenge is the change of the political and economic situation in Europe, which also influences the German market and its consumer behavior. Virtually, the market suffers from huge oversupply. The challenge for Cross Jeans is to position its strengths and to filter out the differences.

Where does Cross Jeans see itself in five years’ time?
We are improving our position in Germany. Our aim is to enter the Asian and the Nordic states market.

Cross Jeans
Cross Jeans