Crowded halls and a lively atmosphere characterised the latest edition of Milano Unica, held in the Portello Area, Milan. The show opened on 11 February 2014, and hosted 397 exhibitors, slightly less than the 417 ones presented during the February 2013 edition. Out of the total exhibitors 67 came from abroad.

Despite the downtrend in revenues (-2.4%) in 2013, the Italian textile industry’s balance trade was positive for the fifth consecutive year (it registered a €2.4 billion balance), totalling €7.8 billion sales. Also the first results of 2014 showed positive growth letting some optimism shine through. Exports in 203 totalled over €4.3 billion, bringing true oxygen for all companies. Among the first 15 top destinations for exports were Turkey (+3.6%), Bulgaria (+4%), Poland (+5.8%) and Switzerland (+4.9%). Showing declining trends there were Germany (-1.5%), France (-5.7%), Tunisia (-13%) and China (-2.7%).

For its new future initiatives, Milano Unica will focus on involving foreign countries and manufacturers. For this for the upcoming September edition they will host the “Japan Observatory” initiative. This new project will be located in a special area within the exhibition ground where exhibitors representing the country’s manufacturing excellence, will have a chance to expand their high-end offering through the presentation of complimentary fabric, rich in innovation and mainly dedicated to sportswear technology. Entrance to the “Japan Observatory” will be upon invitation only as agreed with JFO, the Japan Fashion Week Organization, the Japanese association grouping all operators of the textiles and apparel sectors, fashion designers and distributors.