“The mood in the halls is the best proof that Düsseldorf show fair GDS is doing better and better,” said Chairman at Messe Düsseldorf GmbH Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, “key exhibitors and buyers have come back to Düsseldorf.” Full and busy stands were the picture at Düsseldorf during GDS (gds-online.com) which took place 14th, 15th and 16th September. 1392 exhibitors (including 280 new and returning exhibitors) from 45 countries presented their shoe and bag collections for spring/summer 2008. With around 33,500 trade buyers (51 % from abroad) from over 80 countries the fair closed at the previous year´s level. Alongside Germany, the countries boasting the largest contingent of visitors included the Benelux countries, Great Britain, Italy, Denmark and Sweden, Portugal, Greece, France and Austria, Easten Europe, Russia as well as USA, South Africa, Australia and Japan.

The exhibitors in the young fashion areas were satisfied with the quality of visitors and the high demand for fashion with dress-shoes, ballerinas and high heels overriding the demand for casual footwear and sneakers.

“All visitors were well informed and we had a lot of international customers from East and Nord Europe, said Dr. Thomas Nassua from Oliver shoes. Marvin Bernstein from Skechers said “The fair is great, all the important customers were at our stand and we had a good response for fashion.” Marc Schwarz of Levi´s reported that: “the majority of our visitors came from abroad and we are also happy with the order taken.” Ben Sherman was a first-time exhibitor and got good feedback from the Benelux countries. In the design hall, brands such as 7 for All Mankind, Diesel, G-Star, Closed and Ed Hardy Shoes also reported a great response.

In a quirky touch 100 independent streetwear labels and underground fashion were presented in hall 13 in “oriental boxes” all around the catwalk at the “Kaffee Oriental Plaza”. The fair stands were been presented as Arabian merchants palaces in a warm colour spectrum ranging from orange to terracotta and bordeaux.

Next year GDS will be held from 14 to 16 March and from 12 to 14 September 2008 at Düsseldorf.

- Lisa Dartmann -