Translated by
Nicola Mira
May 24, 2016
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Etienne Cochet appointed General Manager of WSN Développement

Translated by
Nicola Mira
May 24, 2016

From 1st June Etienne Cochet will take charge of general management at WSN Développement. Cochet was for 22 years in charge of the benchmark Maison&Objet trade show, and recently acted as Deputy Commissioner General for the Mondial de L’Automobile automotive show. He will now take operational control of France's leading personal apparel shows, Who’s Next and Première Classe.

Etienne Cochet

Resorting to an external manager is a first for WSN, which has always been directed by its two founders, Xavier Clergerie and Bertrand Foache. They still own a 50% stake in WSN (25% each), while Comexposium owns the remaining 50%.

"It was a joint decision between the partners to choose to call upon a recognised personality in the trade show industry to take charge of WSN," underlined Xavier Clergerie. "This will force the company to work in a different fashion," he also stated. 

The arrival of Etienne Cochet is part of WSN's strategy to meet all of the challenges the fashion industry is faced with. "It is by strengthening a Paris-based Fashion & Accessories hub that we will be able to offer brands and international buyers a targeted, consistent response and, more than ever, showcase Paris as the world's creativity capital," said Xavier Clergerie.

The context is one of accelerated development in new distribution and consumption modes, chiefly linked to new technologies. In this scenario, Etienne Cochet's road map is to increase the speed of the shows' digital evolution and boost their experiential dimension. It is a major challenge, as Cochet himself admits. He was one of the key players and President of the 'Paris, Capital de la Création' (Paris, creativity's capital) association.

His arrival follows after WSN's first-session shows experienced a decline in visitors. From 2015, and after an in-depth survey with its exhibitors and visitors, the show organiser had decided to move the July sessions to September. Clearly, the negative figures of last January's sessions have led to drastic decisions. 

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