May launches with a merry start as the Die Brillenmesse independent eyewear show takes place in Cologne. The Rhine City event is held in the spacious surroundings of Dock One, and features independent eyewear designer flair. Nathanaël Wenger Co-director of the show (above with co-director Steffen Keil) gives an exclusive interview to Eyestylist about the forthcoming show.
Could you please share with us the development of Die Brillenmesse Köln? “We are on track with Cologne with around 30 exhibitors so far, and quite a few more in the pipeline. With the business uncertainty, some smaller companies are reducing their marketing costs this year. Cologne is still new and we think and believe that Cologne is a perfect place for our show.”
Who are some of the exhibitors in Köln this year? “There is interesting brand variety that includes Adrian Marwitz; Andy Wolf; Götti Switzerland; Anne et Valentin; Baars Eyewear; Blackfin; Coblens; Götti Switzerland; Lunor; Orgreen Optics; Joel Lesca Optique; Kerl; Miamai; Masunaga, Markus T.; Martin & Martin; Robert la Roche and TD Tom Davis Ltd. to mention just a few.”
Die Brillenmesse is a great supporter of independent labels. Nowadays, as eyewear is evolving rapidly for both the industry and the consumer, what challenges do independent creators face? “First there is a great uncertainty in the market due to the global crisis (Trump, Turkey, Brexit etc.), the future of online, clients changing behaviour (higher demands, price sensitiveness, information level…) and big pressures on Retail in general. So it is not easy to find a clear direction in these turbulences. We try to give some direction by supporting independent labels, design and innovation, but also Newcomers. Nowadays, it is even more important to find new ways of doing business and being different from the mass-market. This is our mission, and we can see that it works with many independent opticians in Switzerland. I think it is important that opticians focus on their strengths – which is personal contact, artisanship, good advice, innovation and high-end quality.”
Please tell us about the Think Tank sessions that are part of the Die Brillenmesse Programme.“The response to the Think Tank sessions was positive and we will feature similar subjects as in Stuttgart. This will include how to reach new clients, digital change, and technical innovations. Again, the aim is to give the independent opticians some input and inspiration on how they can keep direction in a rough sea. We are also delighted that two Vintage collectors – Christian Metzler and Alexander Dosiehn will show their Vintage Collections in Köln with amazing beauties!”
Mark you calendars now! Saturday and Sunday 6th and 7th May at Dock One in Cologne for Die Brillenmesse Köln 2017. Further info at www.diebrillenmesse.de JG