EKS: quality footwear in IstanbulNow in its fifth edition, the fair based in Istanbul takes a look at the positives results achieved over the years and focuses on increasing the international scope of the event by also offering all-inclusive packages that are extremely advantageous for exhibitors.
EKS is now in its fifth edition: what’s your overall impression?
EKS is a fair dedicated to the high-end range of the market, and above all to retailers, but also footwear wholesalers interested in placing the last few orders that will round-off their collection. We are very satisfied with the results of these first five editions, because the number of exhibitors has grown slowly, but constantly. Moreover, to encourage participation in the event, we recently started proposing free lodgings in a hotel for the entire duration of the fair and, in the case of particularly important brands of international renown, we also offer a complete package that includes the flight, hotel, and stand. As far as Italian brands are concerned, we would be happy to welcome them with open arms!
Today, from which countries do your main exhibitors arrive?
Currently, the great majority of our exhibitors is of Turkish origins, but we also have some Russian exhibitors, which produce in Turkey. Our main goal is that of expanding upon the international scope of the event, by also offering Italian or Spanish companies – for example – an all-inclusive package that includes the previously mentioned flight-hotel-stand.
EKS takes place in May and presents the collections for the 2018-19 winter season: don’t you think this is a little late for proposing the winter collections?
For the Turkish market, these dates are the right ones for presenting the winter collections, to the extent that among the buyers are numerous boutiques that choose our event to place their last ready-to-wear orders and accordingly offer their clientele the latest market products and leading trends. When compared to the fairs of our competitors, our focus is on high quality footwear producers, and for this reason, we are very interested in getting foreign companies to participate and not just Turkish ones.
You are also representatives of Ukraine-based fairs …
Exactly, we are representatives in Turkey of two Ukraine fairs: Leather & Shoes in Kiev, from 17 to 20 July, dedicated to the finished product and components, and Expo Shoes, always in Kiev, from 2 to 5 October 2018. It is specifically thanks to the work done over the years for these two events that the idea of internationalising EKS first arose. Both Ukraine and Turkey, in fact, have close ties with one another when it comes to footwear and leather goods imports and exports, and the growing number of Turkish companies in not only Ukraine, but also Russia, is the greatest proof of this.
In addition to these fairs, in what other way do you try to promote your image on an international level?
This coming June we will be present at Expo Riva Schuh in Riva del Garda with the aim of promoting the autumn edition of EKS, scheduled between the end of October-November. We chose this event exactly because we believe it is the closest to our target.
We also are working on a project of greater scope to be realised in strict collaboration with the Ministry of the Interior for the organisation and expansion of the next edition of ‘EKS Raw Materials’, dedicated to materials, components, and accessories for the footwear industry to be held at the beginning of February and the beginning of July.