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Micam gets off to slow start but proves international draw

Italian footwear tradeshow Micam got off to a slow start this week, but momentum built on the second day of the show, according to exhibitors.

Despite reports from brands that the show “seemed quieter” than last season, exhibitors agreed that traffic picked-up considerably after its second day (Monday March 5) of the four-day fair, at Milan’s Fiera Milano exhibition centre. 

“It is definitely quieter than last season,” said Peter Knight, brand and account development executive at Base London. “That said though, we have still been busy writing orders, particularly today [Monday].”

Buyers from the Far East seemed to be particularly strong in number with most UK brands agreed that Micam remains largely about developing their international business rather than meeting British buyers.

“A few of our British customers have come on the stand to see us but most of the new business we are hoping to pick up here is from international customers,” said David Corben export director at Northhampton-based footwear brand Steptronic.

“We have had buyers on the stand from Hong Kong, Japan and China,” added Lee Davies director of Yum Yum Shoes, footwear distributor from brands United Nude and Esska. “There has definitely been a lot of Far Eastern buyers this time around.”

UK buyers from multiples including Office, New Look, Sole Trader, Debenhams and Asos were all present at the show, which took place from March 4 to 7, although most said they were there to seek out new international brands rather than buy more from British brands.

Sally Heath head of buying brands at New Look said: “Micam is a great show for finding new international brands. It also gives us a chance to review the autumn 12 buys we have made so far.

“Footwear is trading fast this season and so we are here looking to build on our autumn 12 offer.”

UK indies were conspicuous by their absence with most already having done their footwear buys at the likes of Bread & Butter, Pure and Moda, earlier in the season.

Indes from Europe, particularly Italy, France and Germany, were stronger in number, with many looking for brands in the International Visitors Hall.

“This show is great for discovering brands,” said Hans Weitenbach from Berlin-based independent Jacuzzi. “We have already found a British brand called Fish & Chips which will be perfect for our shop.”

Micam served up little in the way of new trends for autumn 12 with hiking details, chunky soles, snakeskin and red all continuing to be popular choice on footwear across most brands.

For a full trend report see next week’s issue of Drapers magazine. The next edition of Micam takes place from 16-19 September, 2012.

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