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Ladybrille® Fashion Business: WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris January 2012 Report

WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris ended its first edition as a global trade show Tuesday January 24th on a positive result.
Altogether, 65,682 visitors dispatched up around the six exhibition halls of the trade show located at the Parc des
Expositions – Porte de Versailles. 68 % of these visitors were French while 32% (i.e. 21,286 visitors) included international buyers.

All the major fashion actors were looking forward to this new meeting point, which had been very actively promoted these last 7 months. After four days, most visitors praised this new event, a huge one indeed, but considered as clear and dynamic, where the offer was clearly identified in each one of the fashion areas.

The integration of brands previously exhibiting at PRÊT-A-PORTER PARIS proved successful in PRIVATE and all of them praised the space design, as well as the efforts made by the organizing team to give a boost to both floors in hall 7 and increase the offer’s appeal.

In hall 4, FAME confirmed its position as a leader on the creative womenswear market segment and as a result was packed with people during four days.

For the first time since its creation, PREMIERE CLASSE dispatched its products in four small accessory trade shows scatted in three different halls. In many ways, this new face proved efficient, helping buyers get a better understanding of the offer. However, if most areas enjoyed a successful attendance during four days, bag designers in hall 2.2 lamented the poor number of buyers.

WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris also launched a brand new area, LE CUBE, devoted to leather goods and luggage. Leather good retailers were happy to find back a real luggage and leather good offer at Porte de Versailles and praised the product visibility. Exhibitors also enjoyed the business-oriented as well as joyful atmosphere of this first edition.

If MESS AROUND suffered on account of a low attendance Saturday and Tuesday, the purchasing atmosphere proved positive Sunday and Monday. For most exhibitors however, the turnover remained as satisfying as in January and September last year. If French visitors were not as present, the number of foreign retailers, mostly from Europe, but also from Asia and America, was on the rise. Visitors and exhibitors all praised the quality of the space design and the very clear offer.

The true revelation came from MR. BROWN, an area devoted to urban and men’s fashion. Buyers, just like exhibitors, who massively attended the event, praised the organizing team’s space design choice and brand selection. The special state of mind and high impact events organized (late opening hours, live showcases, trend forum, exhibitions…) were also an opportunity to assertmthe personality of this area.

After this “premiere”, the organizing team will learn from this experience and make the necessary adjustments and improvements to prepare the June 2012 edition of the trade show (30 June – 3 July), WSN DEVELOPP EMENT’s second big challenge as part of the new
group strategy.

These improvements will include an even more consistent segmentation and clarity, the promotion of the areas devoted to traditional retail (LE CUBE and MESS AROUND) and working on the identification of the various areas to improve the visitor flow.

On top of these improvements, WSN DEVELOPPEMENT will focus on the international promotion of the event, foreign customers being the group strategy’s core target. Within two years, a goal should be reached and the event should welcome 50 % international visitors. French visitors will however not be neglected and be addressed through a special communications strategy.


With 44,396 visitors, France remains the leader, representing 68% of the global attendance. Whether from the province (58%) or the Paris region (42%), French buyers massively attended this first edition of WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris, proving thereby that sales are not a major obstacle to a satisfying trade show attendance.

EUROPE (except France)
European buyers (except French buyers) represent 76.9 % of the foreign attendance (i.e. 16,366 visitors). Utterly loyal, Italians once again rank first this session with 3,920 buyers, i.e. 18.4% of the foreign attendance. Coming second and third are Belgium with 2,240 buyers and Spain with 2,180 buyers (i.e. respectively 10.5 and 10.2 % of the foreign attendance). Great Britain and Switzerland are the other runners-up, accounting for 1,300 and 944 buyers.

With 2,606 buyers and 12.2 % of the foreign attendance, Asia is the second most represented continent. The Japanese have more than ever shown their loyalty to the trade show as the 4th most represented foreign country at WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris with 1,714 buyers, i.e. 8.1% of the foreign attendance. Korea and China each totalized 310 and 312 buyers.

For its first edition, WHO’S NEXT Prêt-à-Porter Paris registered 946 buyers for the American continent, with a significant number of visitors from the USA and Canada (374 and 218 buyers). Brazil was also a significant actor of the trade show with 116 visitors. Altogether, the American continent represents 4.4 % of the foreign attendance.

Among the buyers from the Middle East who attended the trade show, the most represented were the Lebanese with 216 visitors. Israel and Saudi Arabia respectively ranked second and third with 166 and 94 visitors.

With 520 buyers, the African continent represents 3.4 % of the global foreign attendance. Tunisia and Morocco stand out with a larger number of visitors, i.e. 112 Tunisian and 114 Moroccan buyers.

The 148 buyers from Oceania were mostly Australian with 128 visitors.

Ladybrille Magazine

Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.

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