LOS ANGELES — New York-based trade show producer ENK International is getting serious about the West Coast market.

The organizer behind the Fashion Coterie, Intermezzo and Accessories Circuit shows has committed to producing shows at the next six markets at the California Market Center downtown here through 2004. The first show kicks off this November for the spring market in conjunction with fashion week shows produced by New York-based 7th on Sixth and Smashbox Studios in Culver City, Calif.

To demonstrate its pledge to the region, ENK has opened a 1,000-square-foot office in Venice, Calif. with three staffers to oversee the new show, called Coast. ENK president Elyse Kroll will arrive Tuesday to discuss show plans and joint marketing efforts with CMC officials.

“[L.A.] is an important market and we’re planning to be out there a lot more…we’ve got the engine going,” she said.

ENK first bowed here in November 1998 at the CMC building (formerly known as the California Mart) with biannual shows held in April and November under the Pacific Champions banner. Being limited to about 50 exhibitors at the Fashion Theater, the show couldn’t grow, Kroll said.

CMC’s new management provided more space for the venture, which now includes the lower-level Exhibit Hall, she said, creating a“lofty” goal for the number of vendors expected to attend.

“It will be a powerful mix of exhibitors — we won’t be just focusing on activewear, contemporary or anything. It’s going to be everything,” she said.

For their part, CMC officials said the deal represents a strong endorsement for the rising local fashion scene as well as the next step in its own branding efforts. They said Kroll will have carte blanche in selecting exhibitors, but they anticipate minimal overlap with the lines housed in the three-building complex.

“There are designers that are new and getting started, and that’s who we see exhibiting at their show, rather than pulling people from our showrooms,” said Paul Lentz, CMC’s general manager.

Kroll said “anybody” is welcome to attend Coast, provided they pass the vetting process.

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