The International Market Center (IMC) ended its latest Atlanta Apparel Market on a high note, with impressive attendance and order writing, as well as growing brand relationships among buyers and exhibitors.
The market, held June 8-11 at AmericasMart Atlanta, is one of Atlanta’s five annual apparel shows for wholesale buyers, exhibitors and industry professionals, and last chance for buyers and brands to finalize Fall/Winter 2022 orders and instant sourcing.
Depending on the time of year, Atlanta Apparel markets feature the latest looks in contemporary, young contemporary, trendy women’s shoes, fashion accessories and more, plus special categories such as children’s and plus sizes.
“Atlanta Apparel is the premier destination for brands to invest in their business and establish and develop relationships with new and returning shoppers,” said Karen Stover, senior vice president, apparel for international marketplaces. “Buyers came to Atlanta Apparel in June to wrap up order writing for the rest of the year, and our brands stepped up, offering everything from ready-to-buy and game-day apparel and accessories to fall, winter and holiday [offerings].”
Attendance at the June edition of Atlanta Apparel was very busy, with 80% of buyers registering on the first day of the four-day market. Attendees came from 38 US states, Washington, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, as well as six international countries. The June market welcomed many new shoppers who took advantage of the market’s new shopper orientation tours each morning.
Center for Business and Inspiration
As the Southeast’s apparel sourcing hub, exhibitors and buyers gather at Atlanta Apparel to meet customers in their target markets, foster long-term relationships, and stay up-to-date with the industry.
For its June edition, Atlanta Apparel featured more than 350 permanent showrooms and more than 400 temporary exhibits. The marketplace’s showroom format allows brands to invest in a custom build space that welcomes returning and new customers.
Janel Heinsen, Southeast Sales Representative for Joseph Ribkoff, celebrated the grand opening of the brand’s new showroom in the market in June.
“The introduction of our showroom has been a long time coming, and we are thrilled to finally have a permanent space in Atlanta,” Heinsen said. “We knew the exposure in Atlanta would be so great for the company and we can see so many of our accounts here.”
She added, “In my region, probably 50% to 60% of our accounts that we work with right now come to Atlanta Apparel at least once a year.“
Many buyers attending the June market also focused on visiting exhibitors they met in Atlanta and have worked with for years, such as Allison Drake, owner of Island Passage Clothing.
“We have been working with a number of Atlanta Apparel showrooms for about 20 years and continue to work with the same representatives,” said Drake. “Our relationship with the Atlanta showroom has been so easy to build and continue.”
Barbara Levitt, CEO and lead buyer for M&F Stores, noted that she visits Atlanta Apparel at least four times a year to find her inventory in the showrooms, where she has longstanding relationships and can see many lines together.
“By sourcing from Atlanta and seeing many lines on a regular basis, I can keep up with the direction of the industry,” Levitt said.
Live education and networking opportunities
During the June Atlanta Apparel Market, IMC continued its live training and market celebrations to bring attendees together again and keep them updated on the latest industry developments.
Highlights included trend forecaster Jessica Richards talking about upcoming fall and winter accessory trends; an accessory trends vignette produced in partnership with the Accessories Council; and a discussion on implementing diversity in business led by Kiarra Norman.
Both educational sessions were well attended, as was the networking and educational event on Thursday’s Mid-Day Soiree, where market-goers were able to learn more about industrial technologies for live selling from CommentSold.
The next Atlanta Apparel Market will be held August 2-6, 2022 at AmericasMart.
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