German footwear industry is doing well and looks ahead at 2018 optimistically. Carl-August Seibel and Manfred Junkert, president and general manager of HDS/L, the German association of footwear industry and leather goods, depicted 2017 financial statements. Shoe factories with 50 employees (at least) increased their sales by 5,9%, thus moving from 2,7 up to 2,9 billion euros. Such expansion was fostered by domestic market, whose revenues reached 2,3 billion euros (+8,2%). Exports went well too, as they sold abroad 280 million pairs of shoes, thus increasing by 9,8%. As for markets, the best ranking goes to France (+19,6%, 37,8 million pairs of shoes), then Poland (+21%) and The Netherlands (-13,7%). Yet, most of all, in 2017 German shoes sales remarkably went up in Italy: +40,5%, 15,1 million pairs. On the whole, they exported 84 million pairs of leather shoes (+15%). Such good performance drove consequently to an increase in number of employees: +6,7%, 14,762 working units. “Yet lack of qualified workers in the industry is getting more and more evident”, said Seibel while also emphasizing the new role of manufacturers, “who are supposed to look after data, logistics, services and evaluations as well”. German footwear industry is prudently optimistic about 2018, in spite of the daily political and economic situation, which is quite changeable. According to a survey carried out by the association, about 60% of the interviewed companies are confident that sales will increase. In the meantime, they announced the dates of 2019 Gallery Shoes event: on March 10-12 and September 1-3.