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Optimism among womenswear indies

Mainstream womenswear buyers are keeping their budgets flat or reducing them for spring 10 but key brands said there was a more positive attitude emerging among key buyers in the sector.

International Fashion Federation (IFF) chairman and partner in the Parkers agency, Glynn Alwyn-Jones, said although he thought budgets would be broadly flat he felt more optimistic about the season ahead. He said: “Looking at the quality and quantity of appointments for spring 10, things have significantly improved. We are seeing the evidence of green shoots.”

Alwyn-Jones said there had also been a shift in buying behaviour, with buyers backing brands with proven sell-throughs.

Howard Ross, country manager for UK and Republic of Ireland at the Gerry Weber brand, agreed: “Customers are being forced to check what’s selling now more than ever. They are backing brands and product with good sell-throughs.”

Ann Millson, country manager for the Delmod brand in the UK and Republic of Ireland, added: “Customers haven’t done too badly generally, apart from those in Scotland and Ireland. People will be optimistic but budgets will be flat.”

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