Following Informa Markets Fashion’s successful digital events move in 2020, MICAM Americas’ digital marketplace is returning this month.
The first fully online MICAM Americas event, held for eight weeks beginning last September, gathered 120 footwear brands. Representing men’s, women’s and children’s categories, the footwear brands participating in MICAM Americas DIGITAL also spanned a wide variety of price points.
Powered by B2B e-commerce platform partner NuORDER, the digital trade event allowed buyers and sellers to safely connect and conduct business.
In total, 20,000 qualified retailers registered for Informa Markets Fashion’s fall 2020 events, including MAGIC, COTERIE, PROJECT and CHILDREN’S CLUB. Since the digital events removed geographic barriers, the audience of buyers for the five shows hailed from more than 97 countries, and 20 percent of retailers were first-time registrants. Across the marketplaces, buyers and brands made 55,000 connections, indicating the demand for digital B2B interactions.
“Despite global scale disruptions to the fashion industry in 2020, the footwear industry demonstrated incredible resilience in its ability to quickly pivot and react to evolving consumer needs and ongoing market uncertainty,” said Jordan Rudow, vice president of events at Informa Markets Fashion.
Continuing to address its community’s needs, Informa Markets Fashion will host the next edition of MICAM Americas DIGITAL from Jan. 19-March 16, 2021. In response to feedback from participants, the event is introducing new platform features and event enhancements. After retailers and brands asked for in-platform credit card payments, this transaction model has been added to facilitate faster order placement and management. To help buyers browse and find products, MICAM Americas has also expanded and augmented the platform’s search functions.
Simplifying the onboarding process, returning brands can duplicate their digital showrooms from the fall 2020 event, with retailer contact data also repopulating in the system. As the fashion industry continues to adopt digital technologies, and with newer brands joining the digital trade event for the first time, MICAM Americas is also introducing more tailored onboarding packages in order to better assist digital showroom and page setup. Depending on their needs, clients can purchase customizable concierge packages that offer more in-depth help with tasks, including showroom page design and product data uploads.
MICAM Americas will run concurrently with Informa Markets Fashion’s apparel events, with menswear marketplace PROJECT DIGITAL running from Jan. 19-Feb. 15, women’s young contemporary and trend marketplace MAGIC DIGITAL running from Feb. 1-March 1 and women’s elevated contemporary marketplace COTERIE DIGITAL running from Feb. 16-March 16.
“The landscape of the footwear industry is changing, and in order to adapt forward alongside our footwear communities, we want to continually leverage our resources as they benefit brands and buyers,” said Rudow. “For buyers who shop both apparel and footwear, this enhancement offers a more intuitive and user-friendly shopping experience along with quicker navigation through our various digital trade events as they shop head-to-toe looks.”
MICAM Americas is also coming together with its sister apparel shows for MAGIC Pop-Up Orlando. Marking Informa Markets Fashion’s return to an in-person, physical showcase, the event will be held from Feb. 9-11, 2021, and will feature women’s trend and contemporary apparel, accessories and footwear, along with menswear. Further expanding the showcase and uniting the fashion community in a “stronger together” approach, Informa Markets Fashion is collaborating with fashion trade shows WWIN and OFFPRICE to collocate their events at the Orange County Convention Center.
Featuring a considerate layout and appointment-driven networking, MAGIC Pop-up Orlando will draw an audience of U.S.-based buyers from big-box, online, specialty and boutique retailers. As Informa Markets Fashion reintroduces physical events in 2021, safety will be at the forefront of all event layout and execution. MAGIC Pop-Up Orlando will be guided by Informa AllSecure, a detailed set of measures developed collaboratively with industry associations, event organizers and venues with input from health, government and local authorities in order to provide the highest level of safety and hygiene. Attendees can expect larger aisles and floor space to allow for social distancing, health screenings, hand sanitizing and washing stations, and mask requirements, as well as enhanced and continuous sanitization and deep cleaning across all shows.
“The tactile experience is extremely vital and an important part of both apparel and footwear—the touch and feel of footwear samples when making purchase decisions,” said Rudow. “With safety guiding our plans for a return to live events, we will be phasing our approach, starting with more intimate, limited-footprint live events.”
Later in 2021, Informa Markets Fashion will host its larger scale, flagship events in Las Vegas in August and New York in September.
The MAGIC Pop-up Orlando and the live events this summer are designed to give brands and buyers the best of both worlds through hybrid physical-meets-digital experiences. Live events will enable buyers and brands to meet face-to-face, while digital platforms will offer 24/7 commerce for an extended period of time, allowing orders to be placed at the time most convenient for buyers.
“For 2021, offering a variety of trade event opportunities for the industry we feel is the best way forward based on the variety of business needs—needs that will be evolving and changing throughout the year,” said Rudow.