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Pitti organiser criticises BFC for trade show clash

The organisers of menswear trade show Pitti Uomo have criticised the British Fashion Council’s (BFC) decision to schedule autumn 13’s London Collections: Men on dates that overlap with Pitti.

The BFC yesterday announced that the second London menswear event would take place from January 7 to 9, clashing with Florence-based menswear show Pitti Uomo, which is scheduled to take place from January 8 to 11.

Pitti Immagine chief executive Raffaello Napoleone has since openly criticised the choice.

“In what is such a delicate moment for half of the world’s economies, while fashion fair organisers are all working hard to draw up an international calendar that will increase the efficiency and coherence of the work carried out by buyers and journalists and, at the same time, minimise costs, it seems that the board of the BFC is taking none of this into account,” he said.

“I am truly surprised about this as the subject was discussed with the management of the BFC last June and it appeared that the right conditions were in place for a different outcome that would reduce the potential risk of inconveniencing the exhibitors - including a number of excellent British brands - buyers and journalists who usually attend Pitti Uomo”.

But Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the BFC, defended the decision, saying it had not been taken lightly.

“It’s not an ideal situation,” she admitted. “We did quite a bit of research about what our press and buyers would want and the research found that Monday to Wednesday were the best dates.”

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