Business of Fashion - - Business & Innovation - IMAGES Busi­ness of Fash­ion

With 50 of­fices glob­ally, in­clud­ing 13 on the Chi­nese main­land, the HKTDC pro­motes Hong Kong as a plat­form for do­ing busi­ness with China, Asia and the world…

The Hong Kong Trade De­vel­op­ment Coun­cil (HKTDC) con­cluded yet an­other suc­cess­ful edi­tion of its pre­miere fash­ion event CEN­TER­STAGE on Septem­ber 9, 2018. Touted as the most hap­pen­ing fash­ion event of Asia, the 2018 edi­tion of the four-day event (Septem­ber 5 – 8, 2018) reg­is­tered par­tic­i­pa­tion by about 230 fash­ion brands from 22 coun­tries and re­gions and at­tracted 8,700 buy­ers from 80 coun­tries and re­gions.

There was a 2.4 per­cent in­crease in at­ten­dance over last year and the event also wit­nessed in­creased par­tic­i­pa­tion from Canada, France, Ger­many, In­dia, Korea, Rus­sia, Tai­wan and the United Arab Emi­rates. Over­all, 35 per­cent of the to­tal buy­ers were from Asia.

Com­ment­ing on the suc­cess of the lat­est edi­tion of Cen­ter­stage, Ben­jamin Chau, Deputy Ex­ec­u­tive Direc­tor, HKTDC, said, “We’re pleased to note that

CENTRESTAGE has be­come a pre­mier event for the Asian fash­ion in­dus­try, of­fer­ing re­gional fash­ion brands and de­sign­ers a plat­form to pro­mote and launch their col­lec­tions. In its third edi­tion, this year’s CENTRESTAGE at­tracted many global brands and buy­ers to par­tic­i­pate. An in­creased num­ber of over­seas buy­ers came look­ing for busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties and tal­ents, which so­lid­i­fied Hong Kong’s po­si­tion as Asia’s fash­ion cap­i­tal.”

CENTRESTAGE 2018 cen­tred on the theme of ‘To­mor­row Lab’, with three the­matic zones and pre­sented about 40 ac­tiv­i­ties over its four-day run.

The ac­tiv­i­ties also in­cluded more than 20 fash­ion shows, giv­ing brands and de­sign­ers am­ple op­por­tu­nity to con­nect with buy­ers, me­dia and fash­ion pro­fes­sion­als dur­ing these ac­tiv­i­ties.

Ja­pa­nese avant-garde streetwear la­bel Fac­etasm, Hong Kong ready-towear women’s wear la­bel IDISM, and Chi­nese lux­ury women’s wear la­bel Ms MIN pre­sented their lat­est 2019 Spring/Sum­mer col­lec­tions at the open­ing gala show CENTRESTAGE ELITES, at­tract­ing over 1,000 guests.

At the Fash­ion­ally Col­lec­tion #12 and Fash­ion­ally Pre­sen­ta­tion shows, 13 bud­ding lo­cal de­signer brands pa­raded their 2019 Spring/Sum­mer col­lec­tions. CENTRESTAGE 2018 also in­tro­duced the lat­est col­lec­tions by renowned Hong Kong brands in­clud­ing Do­rian Ho, Artis­tic Palace, Har­ri­son Wong, House Of V, and Loom Loop.

A slew of de­sign­ers and key fash­ion in­dus­try play­ers found their CENTRESTAGE 2018 par­tic­i­pa­tion fruit­ful. Mit­suo Naka­hashi, Fash­ion Mer­chan­dis­ing Direc­tor at Bar­neys Ja­pan, dis­cov­ered sev­eral new de­signer brands that could be po­ten­tial part­ners, in­clud­ing a brand show­cased by first­time Hong Kong ex­hibitor nano-secc show­room.

Hong Kong-based brand Loom Loop, which has par­tic­i­pated in CENTRESTAGE since its in­au­gu­ral edi­tion, re­ceived an order from US re­tailer 3NY on the first day of the event this year, af­ter se­cur­ing a deal with a main­land multi-brand store at CENTRESTAGE 2017.

Polly Ho, de­signer of Loom Loop, noted that CENTRESTAGE is now a key an­nual event in the re­gional fash­ion calendar, es­pe­cially as it is strate­gi­cally timed with the start of the buy­ing sea­son, pro­vid­ing buy­ers and VIP cus­tomers with an ex­clu­sive preview of de­sign­ers’ up­com­ing col­lec­tions.

Fash­ion In­dus­try Poised for Sales Growth

The HKTDC com­mis­sioned an in­de­pen­dent re­search agency to con­duct on-site sur­vey dur­ing this year’s event to gauge the out­look for the fash­ion in­dus­try and prod­uct trends. In­ter­view­ing more than 300 ex­hibitors and buy­ers, the sur­vey found that the in­dus­try is cau­tiously op­ti­mistic about sales in the com­ing year.

Nearly 60 per­cent of the re­spon­dents ex­pect over­all sales to re­main steady, and about 30 per­cent ex­pect good growth. While about half of re­spon­dents ex­pect in­creases in sourc­ing prices or pro­duc­tion costs, al­most 60 per­cent of the re­spon­dents said they will not raise unit or re­tail prices, re­flect­ing a gen­eral ten­dency of the in­dus­try’s hes­i­tance in trans­fer­ring in­creased costs to cus­tomers.

The sur­vey re­sults also showed that over 70 per­cent of the re­spon­dents are op­ti­mistic about the po­ten­tial of the main­land fash­ion mar­ket, which is seen hav­ing good growth prospects. On up­com­ing fash­ion trends, about 60 per­cent of re­spon­dents ex­pect ca­sual wear and ur­ban fash­ion to be the most pop­u­lar prod­uct cat­e­gories, fol­lowed by fash­ion ac­ces­sories and high fash­ion/ oc­ca­sional wear. In e-com­merce, women’s wear is an­tic­i­pated to be the most pop­u­lar prod­uct cat­e­gory go­ing for­ward, fol­lowed by fash­ion jew­ellery and bags. Nearly 50 per­cent of the re­spon­dents be­lieve that brand cross­over com­bined with joint pro­mo­tion is the most com­mon prod­uct de­vel­op­ment strat­egy. Ap­prox­i­mately 30 per­cent of re­spon­dents agreed that celebri­ties’ or key opin­ion lead­ers’ en­dorse­ment is also an ef­fec­tive strat­egy.

Fur­ther­more, CENTRESTAGE pro­vided mar­ket in­sights through the Trend Talk Se­ries and Meet the Vi­sion­ar­ies Se­ries of sem­i­nars fea­tur­ing distinguished in­dus­try ex­perts. These in­cluded Anupreet Bhui, Se­nior Editor of Global Street Style at trend fore­cast­ing agency WGSN, who ex­plored up­com­ing fash­ion trends and the in­flu­ence of streetwear among Gen­er­a­tion Z. Euromon­i­tor In­ter­na­tional’s Head of Fash­ion Re­search Jorge Martin ex­am­ined Asi­aPa­cific as the key growth en­gine for global fash­ion ex­pen­di­ture.

Hong Kong Young Fash­ion De­sign­ers’ Con­test (YDC)

An in­te­gral part of CEN­TER­STAGE, the 2018 edi­tion of Hong Kong Young Fash­ion De­sign­ers’ Con­test (YDC) took place on the night of 8th Septem­ber, serv­ing as the fi­nale for the third edi­tion of the event.

The win­ner of the event was Leo Chan for the de­sign ‘Wan­dervögel’. The col­lec­tion aims to re­vive the spirt of the Ger­man move­ment ‘Wan­dervögel’, which em­braces na­ture and free­dom, as an an­ti­dote to hec­tic city life. The win­ner was awarded a cash prize of HK$35,000 and a month-long in­tern­ship at Mar­tine Rose, spon­sored by Sun Hing Knit­ting Fac­tory Ltd.

Yip Ye­ung-ye­ung was se­lected as the first run­ners up for her de­sign ‘Mod­i­fi­cism’, which ex­plores the con­tro­versy of science ex­ploit­ing ge­netic mod­i­fi­ca­tion in mod­ern times. Yip Ye­ung-ye­ung was awarded a cash prize of HK$25,000 and an over­seas study trip spon­sored by MINI HK.

Ng Cho-kiu, Char­lotte, was the se­cond run­ner-up and win­ner of the Best Footwear De­sign Award for his vis­ual sim­u­la­tion of the English rock band Ra­dio­head’s song ‘Ev­ery­thing in its Right Place’. She was be­stowed with a cash prize of HK$20,000 and a month­long in­tern­ship at CLOT Com­pany Ltd. for be­ing the se­cond run­ners up. She also won a cash prize of HK$10,000 and a men­tor­ship of­fered by I.T Ap­par­els Ltd., as the win­ner of the Best Footwear De­sign Award.

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