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16th July 2018, Paris

Unique by Mode City to invite consumers

Debra Cobb reports from Paris

At the recent Unique by Mode City, held July 7 – 9 in Paris, organizer Eurovet announced bold plans to bring the show, along with Interfilière, into the consumer-centric future by creating a B2C, or Business to Consumer component.

There’s no question that today’s female consumers are driving intimate apparel trends, rather than the other way around; following fashion bloggers and influencers through social media, and making their purchases online.

Unique by Mode City, the lingerie place. © Eurovet

However, understanding the new consumer has proven a challenge for many brands, retailers, and suppliers. In addition, the globalization and hybridization of the market is driving more exhibitions in diverse locations, whilst the supply chain is being required to run faster and leaner.

Reflecting the times, attendance at the Unique by Mode City and Interfilière exhibitions was down by 9%, according to Eurovet, the world leader for lingerie and beachwear events that runs the well-known trade shows, along with international shows in New York, Las Vegas, and Shanghai.

Taya de Reyniès, director of lingerie and swimwear for Eurovet, explained that in July 2019 the new B2C Unique Summer Camp will run at the Porte de Versailles in Pavilion 5, alongside the traditional B2B Unique by Mode City in Pavilion 4, with Interfilière continuing in Pavilion 3.

Participation in the B2C segment will be optional for the exhibitors, who may choose to have separate stands or pop-up shops in the Summer Camp area. Brands and retailers will have the opportunity to get to know consumers and their social influencers, leading them to update and take more risks with their products.

The new format will allow consumers to discover new brands, particularly the growing number of small independent brands who may not have an internet presence. Beyond the exhibits in Pavilion 5, consumers may opt for private tours of the trend areas, or reserved seats at the fashion shows.

De Reyniès suggested that textile innovators might take the opportunity to explain new yarns and sustainability issues to consumers, as retail displays and hang-tags often fail to do the job.

A public launch on Thursday night before the show’s opening will be supported by a major media campaign, according to de Reyniès. The opening night concept was trialled in July 2017 with Mode City’s Rock My Swim event, the trade show’s first catwalk show opened to the public, which attracted some 400 attendees.

“We really have to help the brands communicate. Brands may be good at design and organization, but may not be communicating with the international influencers,” she said.

“The retailers are interested—they want to bring new customers into their stores. But traditional shops need to be more marketing-oriented.”

The new format follows the example of several ready-to-wear brands, who have recently chosen to show their collections directly to consumers via social media.

De Reyniès expects that the overall attendance for the inaugural Unique Summer Camp could be as high as 2,500 visitors. “The world is changing. We need new energy, driven by the consumers,” she continued.

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