NEW INITIATIVES UNVEILED FOR MERCEDES-BENZ FASHION WEEK AUSTRALIA 2014

IMG Fashion has announced the dates for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (April 6-10, 2014) and various new initiatives that will open the doors of fashion week to the general public and give consumers the opportunity to see the very latest Spring/Summer collections months before they land in store.

IMG Fashion will launch Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition, a weekend event that directly follows Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia giving ticketholders the opportunity to see the very latest collections on the runway mere days after the industry has viewed it. The Weekend Edition will consist of a series of runway shows featuring the Best of #MBFWA, how-to sessions from hair & beauty stylists, trend showcases, discussions with International bloggers and exclusive shopping opportunities. The event will take place at Carriageworks, April 12-13, 2014. 

“It’s exciting to see Sydney and Australia pioneering new initiatives that will assist in creating even more opportunities for local designers. The new Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition will generate consumer interest by leveraging the buzz and excitement that is generated from showing at a fashion event of this global scale. The NSW Government, through Destination NSW, is proud to support this highlight on the international fashion calendar,” says Andrew Stoner MP, NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade & Investment.

Traditionally the domain of industry professionals, fashion weeks around the world are exclusive invitation-only events that present wholesale designer collections for the trade to plan the looks that will appear months later in magazines and in retail stores. Fast forward to 2014 and the consumer audience is hungry for the very first sighting of the runway fashions.  Enthralled by live streamed shows and social media feeds, the fashionable consumer is deeply engaged in the designer brands from the moment the very first look is showcased at these prestigious trade events. This was proved at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia 2013, where live streams were viewed in more than 95 countries, with an average viewing time of 21 minutes.

For showcasing designers, the media and social frenzy that follows their runway show is a major spike in global and local brand attention. To further leverage this exposure for designers, IMG Fashion will for the first time, launch an e-commerce extension to the global gateway site MBFashionWeek.com, enhancing the runway by creating ‘shoppable’ experience. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia designers will have the opportunity to create a capsule collection for sale exclusively on this platform where consumers can purchase via the live stream or direct from the runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition. This means live stream viewers and Weekend Edition attendees will have the unique opportunity to own the latest Spring Summer 2014/15 trends first – months before the collections land in store for retail sale.

The City of Sydney is a sponsor of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia and Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the 2014 event would be the biggest yet. “Each year Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia puts the fashion world’s eyes on Sydney. Opening Australia’s premier fashion event to the public is an exciting opportunity that will do even more to support local designers and retailers," said the Lord Mayor.

Australian fashion has seen challenging times as an industry with the influx of international fast fashion brands, manufacturing constraints, coupled with seasonal and export challenges. With online retail in Australia expected to grow to $27 Billion in 2016, IMG Fashion are excited to be leading the way with initiatives that support local industry, drive return on investment for runway shows, and help local brands maximise the global attention generated by involvement in the event series. Both Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition are wholly owned and operated by IMG Fashion.

“The consumer activity at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia is an exciting next phase in the evolution of the Australian fashion industry. The Weekend Edition is a powerful marketing initiative that allows participating designers to engage a consumer audience and leverage their show investment. Via exclusive capsule collections available to buy immediately, Shop the Runway will assist Australian designers to generate actual consumer sales during a time traditionally restricted to B2B sales. All the additional marketing benefits of the consumer facing event series come at no additional cost to designers,” says Elle Turner, Director of Brand & Strategy, IMG Fashion.

“Synonymous with innovation and luxury, Mercedes-Benz is excited to be a partner with IMG Fashion for the 2014 season as the event takes an innovative step forward to revolutionise the global format of Fashion Weeks by including a consumer component offering access to the very latest collections," says Horst von Sanden, Managing Director, Mercedes-Benz Cars.

The trade focused, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, will once again showcase the very best in design talent atCarriageworks, Eveleigh from April 6-10, 2014. The 4-day schedule will include a curated selection of Australia’s established fashion designers as well as a showcase from the brightest emerging talent the country has to offer.

Tickets for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition are strictly limited and are on sale now via MBFWeekendEd.com.au

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