Innovation is the new leading protagonist of Expo Riva Schuh, confirming also for the June edition of the show the Innovation Village, the ‘village’ open to start-ups, companies, institutions, and professionals, conceived with the aim of sharing the culture of innovation and creating networking and business opportunities between emerging realities and established players. The project, launched by the Riva del Garda fair, in collaboration with Blum and Retail Hub, and with the scientific coordination of Alberto Mattiello (member of the Scientific Committee at Expo Riva Schuh & Gardabags), represents an important opportunity for exhibitors and visitors to get a special preview of the innovations dedicated to the footwear and accessory sector, thanks to projects presented by start-ups and young businesses in a ‘dedicated’ area.

 The focus of the Innovation Village in the June 2022 and January 2023 editions of the show will be on product traceability: the innovative projects presented at the fair will in fact focus on themes concerning product management, movement, the analysis of sales data for strategies, the creation and management of relations with B2B and B2C customers, and communication and transparency with regards to the product and its productive process. The theme of traceability will also be the focus of the programme of events that will accompany the four days of the Riva event, with interviews, round tables, presentations, and talks that will give voice to protagonists in the world of footwear, leather goods, and accessories.

"The theme of traceability will be at the centre of the activity of the Expo Riva Schuh and Gardabags scientific committee– confirms Enrico Cietta – President of the ERS & GB Scientific Committee – because we feel that it represents a turning point in B2B relations and accordingly also with the end customer. We are moving towards a world where the product will increasingly be considered not only in terms of quality material, but also as an immaterial value, where not only the ‘what’ is important (the quality of the product itself), but also the ‘how’ (the supply chain that produced it). This theme will be increasingly decisive in the future, and for this fair – which is a place for commercial brokering – it intends to take on the role of promoter and facilitator. On traceability we will accordingly work on two fronts: from one end, on how to make a traceability strategy achievable and economically feasible for companies; and from the other end, the role the fair can play in facilitating the meeting between suppliers of traceability technology and businesses. On both these themes our experts will propose initiatives and activities, which will be featured in the up-and-coming editions of June 2022 and January 2023”.   

“Our mission is to promote the culture of innovation in the retail industry and facilitate the collaboration between start-up brands and retailers – confirms Sarah Elizabeth Robbat – Account Manager of Retail Hub, who is in charge of selecting the 10 best start-ups for the Innovation Village -, and this is also the aim of the Innovation Village. When scouting, we apply the same parameters we use for our Explorer platform, selecting only start-ups that have completed a Proof of Concept (PoC). Since the theme of traceability today is extremely relevant, affecting many different areas of business like the supply chain, CX, loyalty, last-mile delivery, sustainability, NFT and blockchain, we felt it was an opportunity to propose, within the Innovation Village, a wide range of solutions of great interest for the sector”.

The Innovation Village is not, however, just an exhibition area, but also represents an opportunity for companies of the future to present themselves: in fact, 10 selected start-ups will have the opportunity to present their product or service to the Expo Riva Schuh & Gardabags public and a jury of experts, by participating in the Startup Competition contest (, developed in collaboration with ITA – Italian Trade Agency. The winning company will have the opportunity to take part as an official exhibitor in the January 2023 edition of Expo Riva Schuh.