Colombia’s national fashion event Colombiamoda is estimated to generate $75.9 million in future business investments, a growth of 14.4 percent from last year, according to foreign investment body Proexport.
The twenty-first version of the Latin America’s largest fashion trade show held in Medellin, saw an increase in all its figures from last year, in everything from the number of visitors, businesses, exhibitors to figures for national and international buyers.
Proexport’s Vice President Ricardo Vallejo said a total of 670 buyers from 23 countries attended the trade-show, 60 per cent of whom were first time visitors.
Over the three days, 571 business meetings took place leading to $65.4 million in foreign investment.
Mexico had the largest purchasing power, accounting for 25 per cent of sales, followed by the U.S (23%) Ecuador and Guatemala (12%), Costa Rica (10%), Europe (7%) and the Caribbean, Chile and Canada (3%).
The products which drew most interest were the underwear and swimwear brands, whilst casual wear, jeans, sportswear and accessories were also in demand.
At a press conference, Carlos Eduardo Botero Hoyos, executive director of Inexmoda, the event’s organizing body, said the results definitively show that Colombiamoda has established itself on the global fashion scene.
Vallejo described the increase in international interest as “very satisfactory,” especially given Colombia’s desire to attract countries with which it is negotiating free trade agreements, such as Canada, U.S and Mexico.
Hoyos admitted that President Chavez’s recent break in diplomatic ties was reflected in the attendance figures, with Venezuelan visitors down from 350 to 139 since last year.
The executive said this year’s event saw an increase of 4.5 per cent in visitors with 8,884 people attending in total. Out of these 3,593 were domestic buyers, up 8 per cent from last year and 1,463 national, up 4 per cent since 2009.
Medellin’s mayor Alonso Salazar, who described Colombiamoda as “youthful and full of vitality,” said the three day trade-show had also benefitted the city’s hotel industry, with occupancy rates up 85 per cent. Salazar said the city would be more than happy to support next year’s event.