By  on June 21, 2006

Trafik decamps for Miami.

MIAMI — Trafik, the Atlanta-based contemporary sportswear and premium denim show, will cruise back down to the Miami Beach Convention Center Aug. 1-3, this time for good. The success of its first Miami show, which took place in February and drew more than 600 attendees, instigated a shift in direction, according to show director James Costa. Atlanta Trafik shows have been omitted altogether, Costa said, as the company looks to expand into new markets.

"Miami had a bigger and better draw than Atlanta, and we didn't want to compete with ourselves in the Southeast," said Costa.

Instead, competition will come from the Advanstar-owned Project and Pool trade shows, when they debut in Miami in January, up against the Jan. 24-27 edition of Trafik. "It's very flattering that we've created something unique outside of New York or Los Angeles and that more shows are following our lead."

Costa expects more than 300 vendors to attend, but he may reconfigure the show floor to accommodate greater interest. Lines such as Fred Perry, 1921 and 575 will return, according to Costa, while new additions include Paul Frank, Ted Baker, C&C California and Moods of Norway. He said the participation of full collections like French Connection also proves the show isn't just about T-shirts and jeans.

"The industry associates us with denim, but we really represent the contemporary market," said Costa.

In August, Trafik will launch Merge, a showcase of emerging designers who are required to exhibit a new brand to participate. Of the 35 vendors from the U.S., South America and Europe that have signed on, many have never shown their collection anywhere, according to Costa.

"It's a perfect situation, because our buyers asked to see the hottest designers that aren't in stores yet, and many young designers don't have the budget to set up at a trade show," he said.

Show amenities such as daily cocktail hours, lounges with Internet access and Trafik Jam, the event's main party, held on the second night, will continue. Trafik also plans to reveal a revolutionary trade show technology that the company has developed with an outside partner. "It will change how you work trade shows," said Costa, predicting August attendance will double from February.

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