PARIS — As a cloud of uncertainty continues to hang over large gatherings and international travel due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizers of Première Vision are forging ahead with plans for the September show, building an extensive digital fair to complement physical meetings, and laying the groundwork for safe conditions on site.
“Since not everyone can come to the show — for reasons of transport, budget, or perhaps a tight agenda — we need to bring an extra service for participants, beyond the chance to show things physically at the event,” said Gilles Lasbordes, general manager of Première Vision.
“This will be a digital event — a hybrid physical and digital event will amplify exhibitors’ visibility at a time when they need to get back into business — to get business going again,” he said.
Organizers are working with local authorities to ensure safety at the show, with measures similar to those of offices and stores, like making hand sanitizer readily accessible and allowing social distances to be respected. “It won’t be like past shows,” noted Lasbordes, acknowledging the unusual situation facing attendees and organizers in a pandemic environment.
In this context, bulking up the digital realm will serve to broaden the audience for exhibitors, he added.
“About six months will have gone by without a show, or a meeting between a client and supplier, and they absolutely need to show their products, have discussions and to see each other — or have contact through digital means,” he said, stressing the event’s importance for the sector.
The digital platform, which was launched around two years ago as a catalogue with content linked to the products, will be expanded.
“People connecting through the Internet can go here, and they can also mix days at the show with browsing online,” Lasbordes noted.
Each exhibitor will have a space for interacting with potential clients, to set up meetings at the show or elsewhere and to connect through e-mail.
Products shown online can be found through searches — a search for shirting material, for example, will call up a selection.
“It will be a service tool that enhances the visibility of exhibitors,” said Lasbordes, who also predicts that the show’s marketplace will extend the digital reach further down the supply chain.
PV’s fashion team will add an editorial touch, offering articles about fashion trends coupled with illustrations of products — with a click on a product, details of the supplier comes up.
Webinars will be held in the two seminar rooms — on trends and other subjects preoccupying the sector — and made accessible online, even after the show via replay.
As announced in April, organizers also worked to make it easier for participants to sign up, loosening registration requirements for exhibitors, taking on the risk of a show’s cancellation, allowing visitors free access and opening up the online marketplace.
Première Vision Paris is scheduled for Sept. 15 to 17 at the Parc des Expositions de Paris Nord Villepinte, and will include Blossom Première Vision exhibitors as well as Denim Première Vision exhibitors, following the cancellation of those shows.
The Made in France Première Vision show is due to take place at the Carreau du Temple in Paris on Sept. 1 and 2.
Première Vision New York is on the calendar for Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, offering a local option for buyers in the U.S. just two weeks after the Paris show.
Denim Première Vision is planned for Berlin in November and should return to Milan next year, on May 26 and 27.
Blossom Première Vision is scheduled on Dec. 9 and 10 at the Carreau du Temple in Paris.