IFLS+IBD Columbia Autumn-Winter 2018/19 season

LEATHERWORLD PARIS CONCLUDES WITH BETTER VISITOR TURNOUT

Leatherworld Paris  held between 16-19/9/2019,  With 60 exhibitors from six countries reported brisk business and has

assumed its place as one of the main rendezvous for the fashion industry that is dedicated to animal materials and their alternatives.

Messe Frankfurt France’s trade shows dedicated to the fashion industry attracted 14,862 visitors, who thronged the aisles at The Fairyland for Fashion. After a 2018 show that was quite extraordinary, the September 2019 show recorded rather more consistent results, with positive overtones on the whole.

In its 95th edition (Autumn/Winter 2019/2020) and held at Fieramilano Rho from 25 to 27 September, Lineapelle offered the market a fundamental opportunity for discussion and networking, especially in light of circumstances that have underlined the fact that the current one is a predominantly reflective phase within which the mid-high range continues to prove to be reactive. Characterised by a particularly concrete and proactive nature, Lineapelle welcomed a number of visiting companies up 2% compared to previous editions and further accentuated its international nature: 49% came from abroad, from 105 countries. The double-digit growth of companies coming from Beijing (absent in February due to the Chinese New Year falling at the same time) and the United States, which reaffirmed the international central position of Lineapelle by choosing it as a privileged venue for sharing and discussion at a time characterised by very strong and worrying commercial tensions between the two areas, was particularly significant. The increase in companies arriving from India, Japan and Russia was also important. The number of companies exhibiting at Lineapelle also increased: +4.1%, coming from 48 countries.

The top 5 visitors remain unchanged in spite of economic pressure and the political situation: 1 – France, 2 – United Kingdom, 3 – Spain, 4 – Italy, 5 – Turkey. We would draw particular attention to the increase in visitors attending from

Poland (+11%), which attests to the important role played by this country in European sourcing. For those attending from countries outside Europe, footfall remained encouraging, with a return in force from Turkey (+17%), as well as

from other major importer countries such as Morocco (+19%) from the African continent and, it goes without saying, China (+41%). United States (+1%), Canada (+14%) and Brazil (+15%) also attended this season’s show.

“The market is difficult but those who have the products and skills that appeal were able to make the most of the situation. Despite less time spent by visitors, the number of people attending still reported excellent business.

There is an explanation for this: exhibitors at our trade shows are increasingly adapting to the demands of the market and becoming ever better at doing so. These efforts were rewarded with an excellent atmosphere and significant results, especially among the top companies.

Overall we noticed some instability on the markets due to uncertainty caused by the turbulence in relations between certain countries. Exhibitors and visitors with most experience of the market were more than able to benefit from this

situation. We note that a number of our exhibitors have adapted to meet the demands of customers, who wish to place orders for smaller quantities. They have also recorded increases in their turnover” says Michael Scherpe, President of Messe Frankfurt France.

Leather was offered by a good fifteen exhibitors from South Africa, China, Bangladesh, India and Pakistan. The lines of jackets and bomber jackets proposed by Leather Grip from Pakistan or by Studio Vivir from India proved to be a particular draw with visitors. Mriga Kumar, the founder of the Indian company Studio Vivir, a specialist in leather and associated materials, praised a show that was “innovative and well-organised” on the occasion of his first attendance.

 

Leather in all its guises resulting in “an event where the future of fashion and the industry come together” as summarised by Dévan Swanepoel with some satisfaction. He is the founder of the South African label WEEF for handmade

ties made of leather or synthetic leather produced from pineapples. South Africa was very much in evidence this year with a delegation of 10 exhibitors. On its second attendance, it was able to demonstrate its creativity in a Leatherworld Paris pavilion that assembled the entire spectrum of leather fashion accessories from footwear to bags.

Offering the whole range from the material to the finished product, China was also in attendance as a prominent operator on the market for genuine leather and associated materials, where Leatherworld Paris plays a “positive role for

our future”, remarked Lily Li, the Chinese director of Unicorn Leather Goods, standing in front of her display of leather belts.

Finished products made of leather were especially appreciated by visitors. We should also mention what a drawing point fake fur was, which has taken pride of place at the show. The ranges left a very strong impression, catching the eye of visitors standing in front of exhibitors’ colourful collections. One unique product that was particularly admired was fake fur made by Ecopel from cornstalks.

Like all the adjacent shows organised by Messe Frankfurt France, Leatherworld Paris benefited from a trends forum showcasing the materials, in addition to dedicated catwalk shows that breathed life into these materials. The programme of special events was rounded off this year by two lectures in the new Hall 2 agora, focussing on two themes presented by professionals from the sector. “Leather goods and fashion accessories: new perspectives” and “Related materials, a booming global market” can be viewed on the Messe Frankfurt France Vimeo showcase.

Next Leatherworld Paris, 10-11-12-13 February 2020 in Paris, Le Bourget