Intl brands represent strong portion of attending buyers, Interstoff
Industry professionals agree: Interstoff Asia Essential continues to be an important business platform after nearly 25 years of trade in Hong Kong. For three days from 6 October 2011 at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre more than 6,720 buyers sourced for a variety of fashion, functional and eco textiles as well as accessories from 208 suppliers.
Majority of the buyers represented garment manufacturers while the remaining were from trading companies, design houses, buying offices, retailers as well as other industry related professional services companies. A positive trend was the significant increase in Chinese buyers attending the fair where as the remaining top visiting regions included Hong Kong, Taiwan, the US and Korea.
Popular items this season were pure and blended cashmere and wool, cottons, printed fabrics, silks and high quality pile fabrics.
A central theme this season was one of evolution. In the last 30 years, Hong Kong has shifted from an apparel fabrics and garments production base to a servicing centre and hopefully, will evolve into a creative trading hub connecting industry producers, retailers, brands and buyers from the east and the west. At the same time, the show, too, has changed over the years, reflecting these industry demands.
“We are very optimistic in helping drive Hong Kong's apparel fabrics and garments industry forward and we are committed to working with and promoting local associations, designers, manufacturers, in fact all professionals within this competitive industry” commented Ms Wendy Wen, Director, Trade Fairs for Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd.
Ms Wen's sentiments were echoed throughout the event. According to Dr Andrew Sia, Chairman and CEO for Ace Style Intimate Apparel Limited, and one of the guest speakers at the Evolving Fashion Forum co-organised by the Clothing Industry Training Authority on day 2 of the fair “this is a great platform to combine different points of view so that we can collectively act as a group to achieve success in Hong Kong.”
Experts presiding over the forum discussed the possibility of an emerging super servicing centre in Hong Kong's future fashion industry and even spoke of redefining the industry's merchandiser role.
Visitors were equally impressed with the fair organisers' willingness to adapt positively towards change. “Messe Frankfurt should be proud of this show,” praised Ms Annika Dahlstrom, Managing Director for AD Ecotextile from Sweden, winner of the Falkenberg Community Environment Awards, and representative for several Nordic suppliers sourcing sustainable fashion fabrics. She further added: “I am so pleased to find so many certified eco fabric suppliers as well as have the chance to meet with bluesign ag, Control Union and GOTS.”
GOTS certified fabrics producer from Italy, M.I.T.I Spa launched their latest warp knitted technology at the fair. “We met some manufacturers representing bothEuropean and US brands but we are also targeting the professional markets to cope with the impacts of the economic downturn, that's why we're here” said the company's Sales and Marketing Manager, Mr Marco Magrini.