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Autumn 05

For its eighth edition, B&B decided to get selective and stress that it was for the “inner circle” of the branded sector.


SLOGAN SELECTED. tradeshow for striking brands

DATE January 21-23, 2005




In November 2004 Karl-Heinz Müller wrote to selected own-label retailers and suppliers to inform them that they would not be admitted to the January 2005 show. “Our event is not a job exchange or a forum for PR and marketing companies, manufacturers or other operators seeking new business or orders,” it read.

Even more surprising was the rumour, confirmed in December 2004, that B&B wasto relocate to a new European city each season from summer 2005 in a bid to retain its exclusive and offbeat atmosphere. Barcelona, in July, would be the first stop, but a smaller event would continue to be held in Berlin two weeks after the Spanish event.

By the time the January 2005 fair came around, the idea of a seasonal roaming show had been dropped, as had the plan to scale down the Berlin edition. So there was plenty to talk about apart from the autumn 05 collections. Despite - or perhaps because of - having had a tough autumn, British attendance soared to 3,400, while more than 200 buyers flew in from the Irish Republic. Overall visitors increased by 8,000 to 42,000. Having once been seen as primarily a German event, about 50% of B&B’s visitors came from outside the country. 

The bear’s paw on the marketing poster was formed from dozens of exhibitors’ names from the 650 that gathered at the Siemens Kabelwerk. The show was now established as the forum for most segments of contemporary culture. Despite its now immense size, B&B was a little short on strong trends. Given tough trading conditions, brands tended to offer “as you were” ranges, so once again we saw skinny fit or destroyed denims, decorated polo shirts, rugby shirts, simple prints on T-shirts and the revisited heritage look.


A decade of B&B has transformed the global trade fair landscape. Karl-Heinz Müller and his excellent team have succeeded in establishing B&B as the ‘must visit’ trade fair in Europe and even the capital city of Europe’s largest market is being positively influenced by its presence. For my business and that of our partners, it will be an invaluable platform for hopefully many years to come.

Jeremy McAlpine, Munich-based agent, distributor and consultant whose past and present clients include Henri-Lloyd, Paul Smith, The Duffer of St George, YMC, Adidas Y-3, Prps, Lyle & Scott,Roberto Collina and Brooks England

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