Over 500 exhibitors are expected at the Yarn Expo Autumn 2018, being held earlier this year during September 27-29 in Shanghai. Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics and two more international textile fairs have also been scheduled earlier. While Yarn Expo has been a leading sourcing choice for fabrics manufacturers, it has also been attracting brand buyers.
As Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics moves from mid-October to the earlier date of late-September this year, so too does Yarn Expo Autumn. They are joined by the concurrent knitting fair PH Value and fashion garment fair CHIC, the global textile industry’s annual sourcing summit for the autumn / winter season. This unmatched gathering of the supply chain creates the ideal business conditions for yarn and fibre suppliers.
With the fashion industry evolving in recent years, Yarn Expo’s position and importance have also undergone change. Wendy Wen, senior general manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) elaborated: “Fashion brands are more experienced nowadays in terms of yarn and fibre selection, and are having more impact on the look and function of the fabrics, which is flowing through to the final outcome of the garment. The need for brands to stay ahead of the latest fashion trends and textile innovations in such a competitive environment makes it vital they can source at a comprehensive event with innovative and quality suppliers, which has propelled Yarn Expo to become one of the most influential fairs on the textile calendar.”
While Yarn Expo has long been the leading choice for fabrics manufacturers to source at, in recent editions it has attracted more and more brand buyers as well. Some of the brand buyers to utilise Yarn Expo in recent years include 361°, Anta, Deckers Brands, Embry, G2000, H&M, I.T., John Lewis, K-Boxing, Li-Ning, Maurizio Baldassari, Montagut, Nike, Polartec, Ralph Lauren, River Island and Septwolves. This is in addition to the fabrics, home textiles and garment manufacturers, wholesalers and designers who regularly attend, including many who are exhibiting themselves at the concurrent fairs.
“Another trend we are noticing at Yarn Expo, which is a reflection of the overall industry itself, is the strong demand for emerging products such as fancy and specialty yarns and synthetic fibres. Last year’s autumn edition saw 55 per cent more buyers sourcing fancy yarns compared to 2016, 40 per cent more for specialty yarns and over 30 per cent for synthetic fibres,” Wen continued.
This growth is also reflected in the number of trade buyers choosing Yarn Expo as their sourcing platform in recent years: from 7,375 in the 2015 autumn edition to 17,185 from 84 countries and regions last year. This in turn is attracting more exhibitors to utilise Yarn Expo as their business platform, with 258 exhibitors in 2015 growing to 493 from 13 countries and regions last year.
The size and scope of Yarn Expo’s buyer profile ensures the fair provides relevant business opportunities for all exhibitors, and feedback from participants in previous editions proves the fair’s must-attend status. “Our main reason to attend Yarn Expo is to increase our customer base, and we’ve achieved this through the fair. Yarn Expo is the key bridge for us to keep connected with Chinese and Asian buyers – it’s the best show that we cannot miss!” Nadeem Akhtar, marketing manager at Hussain Mills from Pakistan, a cotton yarn producer, explained.
“We have been to Yarn Expo for more than 10 years, and this is the best platform for anyone dealing in yarns. You have buyers from all over the world here, so Yarn Expo is the best fair in Asia for worldwide exposure,” Mohammad Saad, director, Abtex International, also from Pakistan, a supplier of cotton, melange and other yarns, said.
Birla Cellulose, a member of the Aditya Birla Group, has been one of Yarn Expo’s biggest success stories. A manufacturer of cellulosic fibres, it began utilising the fair’s prominent position in the industry when it undertook its first major marketing efforts in China in 2013, successfully promoting its brand and products to leading Chinese and global players through Yarn Expo. Its initial experience proved so successful, that it now organises a Birla Pavilion at both the spring and autumn editions to showcase its own and its partner mills’ capabilities.