“It had to be done”, declared Raphael Napoleon. The boss of the Pitti Uomo fashion show did not have the slightest doubt about the decision to carry on the event regardless, even if until a few days ago it seemed a risky gamble, considering the surge in Covid cases driven by the Omicron variant. “It was a challenge”, said the majority of the participants, praising the courage of the Italian organizers. It is time to take stock of the results of Pitti Uomo: the Florentine event, the opening of the men’s season, ended on Thursday with many stands still very crowded, and this is confirmed by the first data released by the organizer Pitti Immagine.
According to the data collected by Pitti Immagine around noon on the last day, the event, which combined the 101st edition of the most important men’s show in the world with the Pitti Bimbo 94 fashion show, dedicated to childrenswear, attracted a total of 4,900 buyers. 30% of which came from outside Italy. The final figure, after adding up the rest of the visitors, from the press to representatives of the sector, agents and suppliers, is destined to reach 8,000, as stated by Pitti Immagine in a press release.
European buyers were numerous: 134 from France, 134 from the Netherlands, 123 from Spain, 118 from Germany and many from the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Belgium and Turkey. The Northern European contingent from Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland consisted of 60 buyers in total. A number of buyers came from the United States and Russia, and there were also a handful from China, Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong.
The event took place over three days and not the usual four days, and hosted only half of the usual exhibitors (548, against 1,200 for men and 170 for children). The exhibition area was almost double that of last June’s session, the first that Pitti had held in physical format since the start of the pandemic. Of course, no one expected a miracle, but the consensus is that the January session, in which the Fall / Winter 2022-23 collections were presented, “was much better than expected”.
“We did a lot better than we expected, especially as the people who traveled to Florence were all very motivated. Overall, we have attracted almost a quarter of the 20,000 buyers who regularly attend Pitti Uomo. It’s easy to travel when all is well, and less so when times are tough. But this January edition came exactly when we all had to be there to kick off the recovery, “Napoleon said.
“We had to be there. It was a question of respect for the entire industry, from suppliers to buyers. I thanked everyone who came to our stand ”, said Niccolò Ricci, head of the luxury menswear brand Stefano Ricci. “The predictions were apocalyptic. In the end, there were more people than last June “, he added. ” It went better than expected, “said Vasiliy Piacenza, Piacenza Cashmere brand manager. ” We are satisfied, we received a good turnout of visitors and the collection it was appreciated, even though there were only a few international buyers.We mainly saw [buyers] from Europe, none from the US or Asia, ”Piacenza added.
“Taking part in this edition was important, to show all the players in the market that we are here. We have been numerous, even if it was an investment. Unfortunately, the pandemic was once again an important factor “, said Antonio Carnevale, head of the Twentyone group, referring to the hundreds of exhibitors who withdrew at the last minute due to the pandemic, such as Brunello Cucinelli, and to the many buyers who did not participate. “Pitti is a really important event. But during the show we mainly saw industry professionals as representatives and agents. There were no buyers, that is, our customers, the essence of our work ”, added Carnevale.