How did the fairs go? The word from the companies
Fairs are officially back to pre-Covid numbers, and the market is becoming increasingly vibrant. This is what emerges from the survey launched by Leather&Luxury, which during the events dedicated to SS24 wanted to delve into the feelings of those who experience fairs firsthand, listening to numerous companies. Lineapelle, Premiere Vision, Milano Unica and Mipel show an excellent trend, comparable to 2019. For most companies, the perception was very positive, despite the knowledge that impressions gathered at the fair do not equate to firm orders.
The market is undoubtedly in turmoil, but there is still apprehension and orders are not always as consistent as in the pre-candemic. This is probably a sign that the market has changed, and according to the companies, increased revenue for brands does not always equate to growth for the supply chain as well. Doing very well, however, are the specialty/intermediate processing sectors where the brand invests to create items that can stand out. Positive trends, then, for rhinestone application, high frequency, weaving and embroidery, to name a few.
But what do brands want from supplier companies? First of all, certifications, which allow for a tracked supply chain, especially on the tanning sector. Without certifications, it is virtually impossible to work with the big fashion houses dealing in luxury. But obtaining them often requires complex and high-cost procedures that are not always manageable for smaller companies, which thus risk being cut off from a substantial slice of the market, despite their work of excellence. The last aspect covered in the survey concerns M&A (mergers & acquisitions) transactions. According to the majority of respondents, the turmoil in the sector represents a big opportunity for growth: new funds available would give the chance to invest in innovative machinery and technology. This is not a scary aspect; already for years most companies have been aware that it is necessary to diversify their customer portfolios to depend on a single customer. The fashion production chain seems ready for the new scenarios.