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FRANCAL confirms resumption of sector's business

Jul '09
The 41st edition of the FRANCAL – International Footwear, Fashion Accessories, Machines and Components Fair received 55,700 sector professionals during its four days, closing July 17, exceeding organizer expectations. More than the large number of people who visited the pavilion, the qualification of these visitors is what calls attention: 25,775, or 46.3% of the total, were national and international buyers, that is, a public that went to the fair to close immediate or future business with the exhibiters.

This result crowns the organizers' efforts to attract buyers and strengthen the amount of business carried out at the pavilion. Since the beginning of the year, when the economic turmoil affected the domestic footwear industry both internally and abroad, FRANCAL assumed the commitment to contribute towards resumption in sector business.

“We feel like it was a job well done,” says Abdala Jamil Abdala, president of FRANCAL. “I am certain the second semester will be much better for footwear and accessory manufacturers, with more production and the maintenance- or even creation – of jobs and income.”

According to the executive, this perception stems from the conversations he had with a large number of business owners during the event, when many of them reported they had already exceeded other events in terms of sales, or contacts that should be converted into business over coming weeks, in the first few days of this edition.

According to the president of the Brazilian Association of the Footwear Industry (Abicalçados), Milton Cardoso, movement along FRANCAL 2009's aisles was a sign the second semester should see an increase in sales in the domestic market. However, he underscores the urgent need to implement protective measures to impede the continued entrance of Chinese footwear in Brazil.

“FRANCAL demonstrated the footwear industry's creative potential to all of Brazil. It could already be generating thousands of new jobs if we already had such rules in place.” The entity's executive director, Heitor Klein, underscored that FRANCAL served as a stage for a series of meetings and important encounters for making decisions at the sector level. “At our stand, we met with visitors from entities from several countries and national institutions, demonstrating that FRANCAL, besides selling, is also a forum for intra-sectorial discussion and understanding, and over these four days becoming the sectorial brain.”

This edition also saw the number of importers exceed last year: 1875 buyers from 79 countries had the chance to get in touch with the best of domestic footwear production, from the collections of large companies to those with limited production, directed towards market niches.

The 2009 edition was the largest ever held over the fair's 40 year history. The event occupied Anhembi's entire available area and even had to set up an external tent to hold another part of the stands. FRANCAL is considered Brazil's main fair for the segment because it introduces the new products for the year's largest selling season, spring-summer. The business conducted by exhibiters at the fair and from the contacts made at it historically represents three to four months of production and up to eight months of retail sales.


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