Articles in category: Fashion


Luxury Prediction for China in 2013


China Luxury MarketNora Chen writing for the Jing Daily thinks 2013 will be the year when more attention is paid to luxury market for men in China and I agree.


As Chen points put, more men in China are earning relatively high salaries and they are looking to spend their earnings on apparel, leather-goods, and personal accessories – three areas in which Italy really excels.


Italian fashion brands have not been slow to realize that demand for their goods from China’a men is likely to rise and they have been gearing themselves up for the increase.


Italy’s Ferragamo was one of the first major brands to open a men’s only outlet in China. Bottega Veneta has a men’s only store in Shanghai.


If your luxury business in China has not decided to dedicate more display space to male clients, 2013 may well be the year in which to start monitoring China’s men’s luxury market.


Made in Italy brands have already established themselves as highly desirable in China, and Italy’s cachet can be used to attract customers to other Italian made products too – not only in terms of clothing and accessories, but also in terms of fragrances, food and drink – areas which often appeal to men and also areas in which Italy is very strong too.


Obviously you should not ignore female luxury buyers, but finding ways to attract more men to the same stores could help boost 2013 sales significantly.

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Italy’s Luxury Brands Conquer India


Italian Products in India

Emilio Pucci

Italian luxury brands are increasingly their presence in India.


Emilio Pucci, an Italian luxury clothing and accessories brand is entering the market in India in partnership with Infinite Luxury Brands. The first store is likely to open in the upmarket Emporio shopping mall in Delhi.


Also in India’s capital, Delhi, Italian luxury watchmaker Panerai showed off its craftsmanship to the creme della creme of Indian high society at the residence of Italy’s ambassador.


Another Italian brand, Furla, is on the point of launching a range of  ”affordable luxury” accessories in India.


Demand for Italian products in India is on the increase, and interest in Italian luxury goods is likely to rise even more as time passes and India’s economy continues to grow.


If you are a luxury dealer based in India, now would be a good time to take a look at what Italy can offer your most discerning customers.

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Prada Bucks the Trend


Italian Luxury Brands - PradaAlthough the luxury market has been seeing something of a dip this year, not all luxury brands are suffering. Take Italian brand Prada, for example.


Prada’s profits were up nearly 60% in 2012 when compared to the same 6 month period in 2011.


While Prada won’t reveal what its winning strategy is, what this leading Italian luxury fashion house has demonstrated is that even during periods of economic gloom strong brands can do very well.


One reason why Prada is doing so well is that this iconic Italian luxury brand takes great care in selecting who it allows to stock and sell its top of the line goods. Only businesses with the right image obtain permission to sell Prada.


Yes, you will see certain Prada items stocked in discount chains, but that is because these chains do not deal directly with the company.


If your business wants to become an official Prada stockist so it can sell their goods in your home market, you will need stores which match Prada’s exacting standards. Knowing what will appeal to Prada and what will not is not easy, however, with the right assistance you can increase your businesses chances of being accepted as an official Prada dealer.


As a business owner, I am certain you would not be at all unhappy to see a 60% growth in profits.

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50s Retro Style Dominates Milan Fashion Week


Milan Fashion Week 2012Milan fashion weeks always generate an enormous amount of interest all over the world, and this year’s September event was no exception.


Trends are set during Milan fashion weeks and buyers from all over the world are keen to see what will be hot in the coming season.


What was clear this time round is that Italy’s designers have homed in on an interpretation of 1950s style retro. The Italian take on 50s retro was not what some expected. The Guardian UK‘s fashion writer Jess Cartner-Morley had this to say:


“What is surprising is that the 50s look as seen in Milan this week is not a cutesy parade of bubblegummy prom frocks and perky ponytails, but something a bit darker, less literal and more interesting.”


Italian sophistication and elegance obviously shined through. Despite Prada claiming its collection was not inspired by the 50s, one top fashion critic, said Cartner-Morely of the Guardian, pointed out that the menswear show was Elvis, and womenswear was Marilyn”. In other words, very, very 50s.


Italy’s designers obviously feel that a 50s style look is the way to go, so those wishing to capture the business of fashion-conscious luxury buyers will need to stock ranges of 50s style Italian apparel which will appeal to their customers.


While stocking up on 50s look luxury apparel may sound simple, in actual fact, it is not. Colors which go down well on the Italian market may not be so popular in Brazil. Or the Marilyn cut that appeals to Americans might not be so attractive to the Chinese.


Knowing what will and what won’t appeal in a particular market, as well as selecting a range of sizes that will sell is no easy task. Well, it is not for some, but I have years of experience following luxury market fashion trends.


You will no doubt be considering your 2013 spring-summer lines now.


If this is the case, then you will need to consider the colors, sizes and cuts of major Italian fashion brands that will sell well in your home market. Searching for suppliers who are happy to sell you exactly the quantities you want is also an activity else you may well be actively pursuing.


In the event that you have problems deciding what your 2013 spring-summer lines need, or if your searches for suppliers are be proving productive, then I or my staff may be able to assist you.

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Pitti Uomo Proves Popular


Pitti Immagine’s Pitti Uomo menswear fashion exhibition proved as popular as ever with attendance levels up 10% over last year. This is a clear sign that the luxury sector is continuing to remain largely insulated from the global economic crisis.


In all, more than 30,000 people visited Pitti Uomo in Florence, of which 17,800 were fashion buyers. 7,400 of these fashion buyers were from beyond Italy’s shores – an 8% increase on last year’s numbers.


Pitti Uomo


There was a 30% increase in the number of visitors from Japan, and a 20% increase in the presence of Russians. The number of visitors from Turkey was up by 12% which reflects the growing demand in the country’s market for luxury goods.


Present too were visitors from other emerging luxury markets, such as Brazil, India and Mexico, as were visitors from China, Korea and South Africa, amongst many other nations.


Raffaello Napoleone, CEO of Pitti Immagine noted “a very positive atmosphere over these last few days in the Fortezza da Basso” at Pitti Uomo.


In all, the event was judged to be a very positive experience for all those concerned.


As I have mentioned before, it is not a good idea to make orders during such events because the sale terms and prices will not be as favourable as they could be. It is much better to visit, take plenty of notes, and photographs, and collect business cards. Then after the show is over, contact the companies whose lines interested you. This will ensure you obtain better prices and keep your margin as high as possible.


If you are unsure how to make an approach to Italian companies which interest you, and this is not as straightforward as it might first seem (read my ebook for more on this), then contact me and I will help you prepare your approach to guarantee its success, provided you pay careful attention to my advice and I can help you ensure that the terms and conditions obtained are appropriate. I can also prevent you from ending up with consignments of counterfeit or substandard goods – which is, alas, something which can happen if you do not take the right precautions.


Pitti Uomo is a useful show to attend because it can help you as a fashion dealer understand future trends, and this means you will be able to meet demand when it comes. If you deal in luxury menswear, visits to Pitti Uomo are well worth making, and Florence is a lovely place to visit in Italy too.

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Pitti Bimbo – Luxury for Kids


Pitti BimboThe recently held Pitti Bimbo children’s fashion show turned out to be a huge success attracting around 6,200 buyers and over 10,000 visitors.


The numbers of international visitors to Pitti Bimbo increased noticeably:


Russia up 25%
Turkey up 43% ,
Japan up 18%,
China up 38%,
the U.S.A. up 10%),
France (+5%),


The dark horse of the luxury market is Turkey, a country which is developing faster than many may think, and as a result, a new class of wealthy Turks are thirsty for luxury products and services.


Visits from South-East Asia and all other emerging markets were up too.


Italy already has an excellent worldwide reputation for luxury women’s and men’s wear, and it is not far behind in terms of exclusive fashion for children.


Perhaps your luxury boutique could do with a children’s clothing and accessories section which stocks the best in Italian fashion wear for children? Doting parents always want the best for their progeny and they are more than happy to pay for it.


Strategic investment in luxury fashion wear for children is likely to pay off, but do remember to consult experts before jumping in.

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Counterfeit fashion, a costly problem


Counterfeit FashionForgery is still a major problem in the luxury industry. Illicit copies of the products of major brands are still everywhere and some of these counterfeit items do make it onto the shelves of luxury boutiques around the world.


Sometimes it is not easy to spot the difference between what is genuine and what is fake. Luxury dealers can be just as easily caught out as their clients.


When sourcing luxury goods from Italy, for example, it is very important for luxury buyers to carry out checks at all stages of the purchasing process. Authentic samples can be used to tempt luxury buyers into making lucrative orders for large qualities of items. Shrewd buyers ensure that goods are checked before the export process it commenced. If this is not done, and inspections need to be carried out by trusted professionals, customs officials may discover that the goods being shipped are not genuine. If this happens, whole shipments can be confiscated and legal problems can erupt.


China is a growth market, as is Asia, and unscrupulous agents and manufacturers will be trying to fool the unwary into ordering products which are not genuine. Before making orders, it is extremely important for luxury buyers to carry out checks to be certain that agents and producers are trustworthy.


Should non-authentic items actually end up in a luxury boutique and customers discover that what they have bought is not the genuine article, the damage to the reputation of your business could be irreparable. Unhappy customers will simply go elsewhere and your formerly profitable business may be forced to close down. Customers make also seek compensation though your country’s courts and the resulting trials may well end up being reported in newspapers and spread all over the internet too. This would not be good for the image of your company, as I am certain you will agree.


My company offers fashion buyers and luxury dealers authenticity checking services. Does your trusted luxury advisor in Italy offer a similar service? I sincerely hope so for your sake and for the sake of the profitability of your business.


Counterfeits can prove to be a very costly problem. Take all necessary precautions and protect your business and its reputation. Doing nothing is very unwise.

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Prada Power


Prada MilanoPrada, the Italian luxury goods maker is performing strongly this year with profits soaring 72%. With revenues hitting €2.6 billion Euros, Prada is doing so well it is nearly as big sales-wise as Hermés and the Italian maker is growing faster than the world’s biggest luxury goods group LVMH according to a report in the Financial Times.


Overseas sales are proving particularly productive for Prada with goods selling very well in Hong Kong, and Asia in general.


Prada is not the only Italian luxury goods maker feeling good at present, shoe maker, Salvatore Ferragamo is also feeling confident as it sees strong sales in Asia, Brazil and in the slowly recovering US luxury goods market.


Luxury buyers throughout the world are lapping up luxury goods which are made in Italy.


The draw of Italian quality and style is proving as strong as ever.

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2012 may be a testing year for world luxury market


World Luxury Market - DiamondsOverall, 2011 was a good year for luxury brands around the world. Gucci and Hermés sales grew promisingly, as did the sales of other luxury brands around the world.


As the US comes out of the crisis, the market for luxury goods there is beginning to recover.


China and Hong Kong are still seeing continued growth in demand for luxury products. 38% of the sales of Italian footwear maker Tod’s came from Asia.


While 2011 was a productive year for luxury sales, demand fell off slightly towards the end of the year. Despite luxury business managers being cautious about 2012, most remain optimistic. Growth is still expected in emerging markets and the tourism sector.


Uncertainly with regard to the future of Europe is leading some luxury operators to worry that the market for luxury goods in the region may not see noticeable growth in 2012.


It looks as if emerging markets will be the most attractive and productive for luxury dealers many of whom will be concentrating their efforts on countries such as China. While India‘s market is growing, demand for luxury goods is not as high as in China. This may well change over time.


China, as often seems to be the case, is still a market which is generating considerable demand.


Other markets to keep an eye on in 2012 are Azerbaijan, Brazil, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mexico, South Africa, Turkey and Vietnam.


I will report on luxury market developments a little later on in 2012.

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Top Italian Luxury Brands: Gucci and Prada


According to a worldwide survey of luxury brands carried out by international market research consultancy MillwardBrown, Gucci and Prada are the top Made in Italy brands.


MillwardBrown’s Brandz 2012 survey revealed that Gucci and Prada are in the world top 10.


Top Luxury Brands


Sitting at the top of the luxury brand ranking are Louis Vitton and Hermès. In terms of something called ‘brand momentum’ which is the power of a brand in a specific moment, Italy’s Prada is one of the world’s top performers.


The MillwardBrown survey also confirms what most luxury dealers know already – China is a growth market.


For those dealing in luxury products which are Made in Italy, seeing Gucci and Prada in the top ten of a survey of this genre is definitely good news. The world wants luxury goods which are made in Italy and it wants luxury brands – the strength of Prada is clear evidence of this.


Prada and Gucci are merely the tip of Italy’s luxury iceberg. There are many other exclusive brands in Italy as well as small volume luxury producers which can easily satisfy the desires of luxury buyers looking for individuality and uniqueness.


To find out about Italy’s exclusive brands, you really need to speak to someone with inside knowledge – someone like me, for instance.

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Riguardo all’Autore

Salvo Spagna

The first Italian Luxury Advisor, offers consulting and intermediary services, plus authenticity and anti-counterfeiting audits for the purchase and sale of luxury and high quality Made in Italy goods, including Fashion, Food and Furniture

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