Three days of order placing, relationship building and trend-spotting concluded recently as another successful Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics wrapped up. Once again the global industry truly came together in Shanghai for the industry’s leading trade fair, with 4,538 exhibitors from 32 countries and regions (2016: 4,553, 29 countries and regions) presenting their latest collections and innovations across 11 halls, with the gross area of the fair increasing 6 per cent compared to 2016.

Reflecting growth in the domestic market as well as other regions, the Functional Lab grew 33 per cent in size this year, Premium Wool Zone grew 18 per cent, while an extra accessories hall was added to meet demand. With the entire apparel fabrics and accessories product spectrum on offer, more than 77,000 trade buyers from over 100 countries and regions chose Intertextile as their sourcing event for the season (2016: 73,927, 90 countries and regions).

Wendy Wen, Senior General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd highlighted the fair’s importance to the apparel sector as it concluded recently. “Intertextile Shanghai is not just the industry’s largest event – it is also the leading sourcing and business platform for the industry. Exhibitors come here knowing they can meet quality trade buyers from around the world that are there to conduct business, while these buyers know that the fair provides an unrivalled number of suppliers across the entire product spectrum to source from. This combination is the genesis for a successful, business-focused trade event, and I’m pleased to say that this edition has once again been highly effective in this regard.”

“Walking the halls this year, I was also encouraged to see an increasing number of innovative products and solutions,” Wen continued. “A noticeable trend, too, was the large number of companies offering ecofriendly products and technologies, not just in our All About Sustainability zone. Innovation and sustainability in particular will continue to be a strong focus of both our Spring and Autumn Editions next year.

Exhibitors big and small find success

Companies big and small descended on Shanghai recently for the fair, and with such a diverse range of buyers also gathering, there was success to be found by all. One of the industry’s largest players, Lenzing, who participated with 54 of their partner mills, finds the fair essential to participate in, as Maggie Shen, Marketing Communication Manager, China, explained. “Intertextile is the biggest and most important fair in the industry. Everyone knows it, and comes here to see what’s new. It’s an effective platform for us and our partner mills to meet existing customers, as well as get new enquiries each edition.”

At the other end of the size spectrum, but no less successful in the industry and at the fair, is Huddersfield Fine Worsteds who celebrated 10 years at the fair this edition. Their President, Bob McAuley, commented, “This edition has been very good for us, we’ve been very busy. Intertextile is an easy place to find lots of customers. A lot of new companies opening in the high-end wool sector in China come here each edition. The professionalism of the buyers is high too – specifically we’re getting tailors and speciality menswear stores here. Our sales are increasing big time in China. We expect to double our business in China in the next year.” The next Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics is the Spring Edition, held from March 14-16, 2018. Intertextile Shanghai Apparel Fabrics is co-organised by Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd; the Sub-Council of Textile Industry, CCPIT; and the China Textile Information Centre.