IFEMA, Madrid’s trade fair body, are currently working on the joint staging of two of its most important consumer goods fairs linked to the world of fashion: SIMM, the Madrid International Fashion Fair, and Modacalzado+ Iberpiel, the International Footwear and Leather Goods Fair. The main purpose of this project, which will be implemented in September 2013, is to guarantee a more competitive and attractive event for Spanish and foreign buyers and companies within the new worldwide economic context.

The changes that have been witnessed with regard to retailing and demand within the clothes manufacturing and footwear sectors mean that an increasing number of establishments now bring together clothing items, footwear and accessories under the same roof in order to make up a total look. This is one of the main developments that encouraged IFEMA to launch this project in the first place.

According to the Director of both fairs, Francesco Malatesta, the current economic climate requires the active promotion and development of both events. ‘SIMM and Modacalzado+Iberpiel will present a larger and more comprehensive exhibition, one that adapts perfectly to new needs and trends at points of sale. In addition, our vision aims to strengthen the Latin-based identity of the event, founded on a clear cultural heritage, effectively setting the fair apart from other events of the same kind around the world. In this sense, the fair will become the gateway for Latin American clothing and footwear manufacturers who wish to enter the European market. We are already making progress regarding this idea and have enlisted companies from Latin America who are interested in taking part’, he said. Malatesta has also declared that, in view of the current economic climate, ‘only those fairs that offer a diverse exhibition made up of different sectors will have a future, compared to those that present a monographic range of products’.

At the February 2012 edition, SIMM brought together some 800 brands and welcomed 16,776 trade visitors. Meanwhile, the last edition of Modacalzado+Iberpiel, held in March 2012, featured the participation of more than 600 exhibitors and companies and some 7,500 buyers.