Manufacturers were upbeat at the June 2019 edition of trade show Fashion SVP, as exhibitors praised the quality of attendees and return on investment from attending the event.
This season’s edition of the sourcing show featured more than 100 exhibitors from 21 countries, including the UK, Portugal and China. The show ran at London Olympia on 25-26 June.
Courtney Williams, managing director of London-based clothing manufacturer Cordean, said: “This is my first trade show in 20 years and my first time at Fashion SVP, so I had no idea what to expect.
“I did question my decision [to exhibit] in the first hour [on day one] but it’s picked up and I’ve had enough people on my stand to make it worthwhile.
“The current state of the industry is what inspired me to attend this year – it’s very tough out there and business has taken a hit. [Cordean] needs to expand our client base and coming here is a way to reach out to new customers.”
Designer Megan Crossland of Leicester-based knitwear manufacturer Who’s Who, was another first-time attendee: “It’s been a really interesting show so far and a great opportunity to talk to many different people. The reason we decided to attend Fashion SVP was to network while getting our name out there and securing more business.
“We’ve had a really varied flow of people to our stand from all different industries, including indies, big brands, freight companies and start-ups wanting advice.”
Madiea Gulzeb, brand manager at family-run clothing manufacturer Ask Trading, also noted how quickly the show picked up: “This morning [on day one] things were very slow, but it’s the first day and things have already progressed. We come to Fashion SVP because it’s a good way for us to find big, UK-based companies to work with. Our minimum order is 300 units, so it’s easier and more beneficial for us to work with bigger companies, such as Sports Direct and TK Maxx, who just came by our stand.”
However, returning exhibitor Gioielli Massimiliano – head of research and development at Bangladeshi manufacturer Pioneer Denim – was disappointed with the first day’s turnout, claiming it was “very quiet”: “I normally come to Fashion SVP to find new clients in the UK but it’s been very quiet today. It’s our second time here and I don’t think there will be a third – there’s no reason to. If customers don’t attend, then we’re better off approaching them directly ourselves.”
This season the show debuted a newly categorised layout featuring denim, luxury, small-run and volume sectors, which were all clearly segmented in the hall.
Event director Buzz Carter added: “We’ve had a really exciting talk from Darren Topp, the new CEO of LK Bennett, and lots more producers from the Far East in attendance. We have also reconfigured the show format with two new areas – volume and small-run high-end – in addition to the core of the show and, of course, denim.”