Rubizhne Hosiery Manufacturer (RHM) is preparing to resume its work in Lviv. The company lost all its equipment and stock of finished products when Russian troops destroyed the factory the Misiurenko brothers had been building for 20 years in Rubizhne, Luhansk Oblast.
USAID Economic Resilience Activity (ERA) paid for the manufacturer’s annual lease of 1,000 square meters of production premises in Lviv. Currently, the company is waiting for twenty knitting machines, purchased with funding from RHM’s partners Dodo Socks. RHM has already started accepting pre-orders from partners, and the team is discussing prints on men’s and women’s socks, and looking for high-quality raw materials.
“We are preparing our production premises, planning where to put the machines, and how to organize the process. Our socks are made of cotton, but synthetics are needed for prints on them, so we are looking for quality raw materials in Ukraine. Before the war, we had a wide range and stocks at our own production facilities. Now, in order to shorten the delivery time, we plan to buy them in Ukraine. As soon as the machines arrive, our partners from the Czech Republic are ready to place an order for socks. It will be a new product with a bright design, some kind of patriotic socks with Ukrainian symbols,” says RHM’s director Hennadii Misiurenko.
Small companies selling socks have begun to contact RHM, as they are also interested in cooperation with the company.
To support its employees, the company has begun to pay them wages. This is funded by selling part of the raw materials RHM bought in India a few days before the start of the war. but received in Lviv only months later, because the goods were delayed at the port.
Fifteen families of factory workers were evacuated from Rubizhne to Lviv. Recently, these people received free social housing in Mykolaiv dormitory, 40 km from Lviv. Now they are organizing their lives, and getting their children to school. The company will take employees to work by bus to Lviv, where the production facilities are located.
“Now we are carrying out the important work of presenting our company in Lviv, getting to know local business and looking for partners who are interested in cooperation with us. We need 30 workers to start up the 20 knitting machines we are waiting for. In addition to our own employees, we will invite local seamstresses and knitters to work,” says commercial director Olha Ushakova.
The company’s management believes that everything will work out in Lviv. But after Ukraine’s victory, they want to return to Ukrainian Rubizhne and rebuild their factory there.