With this year’s Olympics, trade show Pure has pushed its opening date back two weeks. But was this the right decision?
Ruth Faulkner –
NO: There is of course no way Pure could have stuck with its usual early August dateline, not least because all of London’s hotel rooms would have been full, making it impossible for international buyers and others from outside the capital to visit the show.
However, moving it two weeks later in the season is wrong for several reasons. Pure will now take place from August 19-21, which is just too late in the womenswear selling season.
By the time Pure comes around buyers will have had the opportunity to attend UK rivals Scoop and Moda, Pret a Porter: Who’s Next in Paris, Vision, Ciff and Gallery in Copenhagen. Several retailers will have already committed much of their budgets for spring 13, leaving them with little or nothing left to commit to brands they may see at Pure.
In particular, coming a week later than rival womenswear tradeshow Moda, which will take place at Birmingham’s NEC from August 12-14, is likely to take its toll.
Select brands have chosen to show at Moda for the very first time this season, as they think buyers will be more likely to visit a show that takes place in Birmingham rather than brave the capital.
Of course, Pure had an unenviable choice to make thanks to the Olympics. But I would expect the shift two weeks later will lead to an exceptionally quiet edition of Pure this season.
Victoria Gallagher –
YES: Most Londoners are going to find it hard enough getting to work every day without having to trek to West London for a trade show.
With an estimated 5.5 million visitors expected to hit the capital during the Games, buyers all over the country are much more likely to want to avoid London during the Olympics. Many will be actively avoiding the capital as a huge influx of tourists could bring about travel chaos with packed tubes and delayed trains. Hotel prices will also be inflated as businesses look to cash in on the increase in visitors.
As well as giving buyers the opportunity to avoid the melee of London during Games season, Pure’s later date offers time to revaluate their buys for the season ahead. By late August they will know exactly how much budget they have left for the season ahead and will be able to fill the gaps, whether it be finding further colour options, a larger choice of skirts or a few more accessories.
Added to this, we are seeing buying patterns change greatly in recent years, and trade shows need to move with the times. Buyers are increasingly working closer to season in order to make sure they are buying the hottest trends, and Pure could benefit from this new strategy. In future we could even see more trade shows moving their dates later.