Playtime Paris concludes lacklustre session
The summer edition of the Playtime Paris trade show
“We don’t have the final figures yet, but they’re going to be below those of the January edition in terms of visitor attendance. Advance registrations were on par with January, but I think that some visitors were discouraged by the situation in Paris and the surrounding area, although on July 1 we sent out an email explaining that there was no danger in coming to Playtime
Regular exhibitors, for example French sneakers brand Spring Court, did observe a decrease in the number of visitors, and said the show was quieter than during the winter edition six months ago. Philippe Allard, sales director of Bopy and Méduse, two footwear brands owned by the Humeau-Beaupréau group, said that “We love the Playtime show, it’s nicely thought out, well staged and well organised, but footfall is falling. We did good business, but less so than in January. I don’t think that the [riots] in Paris and in the suburbs were the only reason for this shortfall, it’s structural, the market has been affected by the economic crisis.”
Other brands were satisfied, for example The New Society from Spain, Mini Rodini from Sweden and World of Pop from France. They all had one element in common: they had booked their buyers’ appointments ahead of the show. “This is a good session for us. We had plenty of appointments on Saturday, and there were also a few nice surprises, like being able to enter the US market with a first client which has four stores,” said Eloïse Pulby who co-founded World of Pop (WOP) 18 months ago with four former Kidiliz colleagues
As physical retail struggles, businesses are rethinking their strategy, and family stores commercialising products for the whole family are increasingly popular.
“The market is groping around for solutions, searching for identity, we’re at a turning point and something good is emerging. It’s still a niche sector, and products are becoming more and more geared to travelling, to meet families’ demand for leisure pursuits. High-tech is also slowly making its mark in our sector,” said Danguillaume, underlining that she is proud of the range of exhibitors at the show. “The buyers who attended were happy with the selection,” she added.