Translated by
Nicola Mira
Jun 8, 2020
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Pitti Uomo show forced to cancel summer edition

Translated by
Nicola Mira
Jun 8, 2020

Claudio Marenzi, president of Pitti Immagine, summed up the Italian trade show organiser's disappointment by saying that cancelling Pitti Uomo was “a painful but inevitable decision.” Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Pitti Immagine had initially postponed the summer edition of leading menswear show Pitti Uomo from June to the start of September, but has now had to cancel the event. The same fate has befallen the organiser's other Florentine shows, Pitti Bimbo and Pitti Filati.

Pitti Uomo’s last edition, held in January 2020 - Pitti Immagine/AKAstudio - collective

Pitti Immagine was determined to stage Pitti Uomo at all costs this season, keen to broadcast a positive message to the market. But a number of labels thought otherwise, deeming the dates of September 2-4 unfeasible and, to all intents and purposes, useless. Italian labels Lardini and Brunello Cucinelli, the latter an influential Pitti Uomo exhibitor, announced they would not take part in the show’s September edition. Pitti Immagine eventually decided that the number of confirmed participants was insufficient and, given the industry’s lingering difficulties, they eventually threw in the towel.  

Pitti Immagine’s board of directors met last Tuesday by video conference, and “decided to postpone the physical shows to January 2021, instructing [Pitti Immagine] to focus all of its energy this summer on the shows’ digital version, open to all exhibitors, leveraging the work and the investment undertaken to launch the Pitti Connect platform.”

Claudio Marenzi said that the decision “was dictated by the operational and financial difficulties currently faced by the vast majority of manufacturers and distributors - especially retailers and department stores - and by the uncertainty that still remains with regards to travel arrangements between countries, as well as to quarantine provisions, which of course significantly impact the plans of international buyers.” Difficulties that are amplified by the lack of clarity regarding the Italian government’s, and the EU authorities’, financial aid measures.

Pitti Immagine is therefore concentrating on the new Pitti Connect website, which is set to go live between the end of June and the beginning of July. “It's much more than a virtual showroom,” said the General Manager of Pitti Immagine, Agostino Poletto, adding that “it is a sophisticated networking and marketing tool that will enable exhibitors to boost their visibility with tens of thousands of recognised buyers, to activate targeted, certified commercial contacts, receive support in their order management process, and stage live events and presentations.”

Poletto underlined that Pitti Connect “will showcase collections and products by theme, will promote emerging talents, stimulate debate on the hottest current issues, and feature collaborations and partnerships with the media and other fashion industry players.”

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