Australian fashion week may be about to get its biggest-ever shot in the arm. The event’s organizers are expected to announce Friday that the spring-summer shows will move to late March next year from their current slot in early May.
According to industry sources, IMG Fashion Asia Pacific, which oversees the Sydney shows, is planning to hook up with Melbourne-based Australian Exhibitions and Conferences. AEC organizes Australia’s biggest fashion trade show, Fashion Exposed, and the spinoff boutique show, Premiere. The new fashion week dates would coincide with the March edition of Premiere.
Many people believe that Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia’s current May timing runs either too late for the Australian spring-summer buying cycle or else too early for the resort season for northern hemisphere-focused designers.
Earlier this year, AEC’s managing director Harvey Stockbridge said discussions were underway with IMG to potentially dovetail MBFWA and Premiere next year. If the exhibitor numbers at the most recent editions of MBFWA and Premiere are anything to go by, a joint effort could deliver as many as 300 premium brands across the two events.

“I think it would make absolute sense if IMG and Premiere were able to align timing, it would make absolute sense to collaborate — but we can’t go any later than the last week of March” Stockbridge said.

This story first appeared in the May 11, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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