MILAN — Italy’s fashion industry has slowed its growth, but is still expanding, despite the weakness of international markets. According to the Fashion Economic Trends provided by the Italian Chamber of Fashion on Wednesday, revenues this year are expected to total 86.4 billion euros, or $96.6 billion, up 1.4 percent compared with 2015. Last year, sales rose 2.4 percent versus 2014. In 2016, exports are expected to climb 1.5 percent to 62 billion euros, or $69.3 billion. The second quarter of the year improved compared with the first, but the third quarter is expected to slow down, with business picking up in the last quarter, said the study. The months of July and August were affected by the Brexit vote in June, but the effects are forecast to wane in the coming months.
On Wednesday, the Camera della Moda said Milan Fashion Week, running Sept. 21 to 26, will comprise 71 runway shows, 95 presentations and 31 events.
Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has once again been invited to open the week, this time at the unveiling of an exhibition called “Crafting the Future: Stories of Artisanality and Innovation,” realized with the fashion association and the support of the Ministry of Economic Development and ICE, the Italian trade commission. Curated by Franca Sozzani, it will be held at Milan’s culture museum MUDEC until Oct. 13 and will be open to the public.
The newly minted mayor of Milan, Giuseppe Sala, previously chief executive officer of the city’s international Expo, took part at the press conference held at the city hall to discuss fashion week. Sala emphasized the need to further open the shows to the city, “becoming more inclusive,” making Milan even more international. Underscoring the number of events this season, Sala said he understands “the power of events,” and knows how the city “is capable of managing them.”
Carlo Capasa, president of the Camera della Moda, also underscored the number of events, “almost three times as many as last year,” he said. One standout during fashion week is also the exhibition at Giorgio Armani’s Silos space displaying a photo exhibit called “Emotions of the Athletic Body.” The designer outfitted the Italian team at the Olympics this year with his EA7 Emporio Armani line.
Fashion and design city councilor Cristina Tajani noted that in September, fashion shows usually generate revenues of 48 million euros, or $53.6 million, for the city.
Responding to journalists lamenting a weak last day on Sept. 26, with no large international brand to anchor the week after Armani’s decision to show on Sept. 23 and not close, Capasa said, “we should all give credit to these young designers and allow them to become big.”