Making MAGIC

UBM's MAGIC marketplace proves to be the most prominent fashion event in the U.S. Here are the most up-to-date details on new shows, new locations and new opportunitites.

Change in the fashion world is welcome and celebrated–constantly shoppers are looking for the next big thing, and fashion houses and retailers are quick to deliver, pushing the envelope to find fresh and innovative must-haves. Change is manifesting itself at retail now with fundamental shifts in how shoppers purchase items, as brick-and-mortars continue to re-invent the shopping experience, both in-store and online. And change is certainly afoot in the business-to-business world as the way the retail industry shops for customer's wearables.

This August 15-17 at the Las Vegas and Mandalay Bay Convention Centers in Las Vegas, Nev., MAGIC will host 15 curated shows with the latest fashion trends in men's, women's, children's, footwear and sourcing categories.

The MAGIC Structure

MAGIC is comprised of the shows PROJECT, THE TENTS, MRket, THE COLLECTIVE, POOLTRADESHOW, PROJECT WOMENS, STITCH, AccessoriesTheShow, CURVENV, WWDMAGIC, FN PLATFORM, WSA@MAGIC, Children’s Club MAGIC, SOURCING at MAGIC and Footwear SOURCING at MAGIC. The impressive (and growing!) list of shows under the MAGIC Las Vegas umbrella represents a major shift for the overall show–the joining of two major event companies to form one comprehensive fashion trade experience.

In April, UBM plc, North America’s No. 1 events company and the owner of the MAGIC marketplace, purchased Business Journals Inc., a producer of fashion trade shows in New York and Las Vegas, for $69 million.

With the acquisition, UBM Fashion Group, the united unit that now houses all fashion-related trade events, gained access to BJI shows such as AccessoriesTheShow, Edit, Fame, Moda, MRket and STITCH. The shows, which ran multiple times a year and in many cases in the same venues as UBM’s fashion shows, combine with the MAGIC suite of events to create a total and complementary fashion portfolio.

The acquisition follows on the heels of UBM’s purchase of Advanstar in 2014, which first brought fashion into the UBM fold thanks to its ownership of MAGIC as well as Advanstar’s 2012 consolidation with ENK International, a fellow fashion trade show competitor.

“We are delighted to have acquired BJI,” says Tim Cobbold, chief executive officer, UBM plc. “This transaction is very much in line with our Events First strategy. It adds to our presence in North America and also in the fashion sector, both of which were already strong following UBM’s acquisition of Advanstar at the end of 2014. We see excellent opportunities to deliver an improved experience for customers and to realize the operational benefits which scale will bring.”

New Shows and Collabs

New is the mantra for UBM, and new is what is happening.

Launching in Vegas this year is Children’s Club MAGIC, a west coast version of the New York trade show Children’s Club, which takes place four times a year.

Serving as an evolution of UBM Fashion’s playground event, Children’s Club MAGIC will continue to build and grow the kids’ apparel marketplace by combining both events’ roster of contemporary fashion brands. The bi-annual event will run alongside the August and February MAGIC Las Vegas events.

“We are always looking for ways to better serve the needs of our brands and buyers,” says Lee Rosenbaum, director, Children’s Club. “The launch of Children’s Club MAGIC will allow us to give the growing children’s fashion market much needed access to the most influential players in the industry on both coasts.”

Shows are combing as well to create a more user-friendly experience, as UBM and EuroVet Americas join forces to co-locate a swimwear and lingerie trade show, now called CURVENV Hosted by PROJECT WOMENS within the MAGIC Marketplace.

“This is excellent news for our exhibitors and visitors who will be immersed in one of the best–if not the best–of the trade shows happening during Las Vegas’ fashion week, showcasing only the best contemporary brands and creating incredible business opportunities,” says Pierre-Nicolas Hurstel, chief executive officer, EuroVet Americas/CurvExpo. “This was the logical evolution in our collaboration with UBM and MAGIC and I am thrilled that we made it happen.”

The goal is two-fold: maximize the buying experience for retailers and brands, surely, but also to address the continually blurring lines between the apparel categories that ultimately create a one-stop-shop for ready-to-wear, swimwear and initiate apparel. PROJECT WOMENS houses women’s contemporary collections, denim and accessories.

Fashionable Japan

Marketshare is continuing to grow as UBM has also announced the launch of IFF MAGIC Japan, a new joint venture between MAGIC and JFW-International Fashion Fair, Japan’s longest running, bi-annual fashion business trade show organized by Senken Shimbun. The first co-venture will take place April 26-28, 2017, at the Tokyo Big Sight exhibition center.

The event will serve as the cornerstone of Japan Fashion Week and will feature a re-merchandised show floor that covers all categories, from men’s, women’s and children’s apparel to footwear and sourcing, as well as a new social media presence. Currently, the show’s exhibitors are all Japanese brands, but UBM says that some of the U.S. fashion customers are very likely to use the show as an entry point to the Japan market.

Licensing + MAGIC

Licensing Expo will also bring its expertise to MAGIC attendees with a limited-availability seminar that will include fashion industry executives as they discuss the unique business models and growth opportunities for fashion brands and their partners around the world.

Vincent Nesi, senior vice president, Iconix Brand Group; Rick Platt, division president, Sequential Brands Group; Henry Stupp, chief executive officer, Cherokee Global Brands; and moderator Marty Brochstein, senior vice president, industry relations, International Licensing Industry Merchandisers’ Association, will be on hand Aug. 16 at 4 p.m. at the Las Vegas Convention Center, North Hall, Level 2, Room N251, for the don’t-miss conversation.

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