Celebrated designers, style gurus and fashion educators from across the world will converge here in the third week of March to attend the 14th annual conference of the International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes (IFFTI), the global forum for the fashion industry connecting the manufacturers, brands, exporters and retailers.
The theme of the IFFTI-2012 conference, beginning on March 17, would be “Fashion beyond borders”, addressing the issues such as multi-cultural identities, virtual connections, commercial opportunities and educational responses. Pearl Academy of Fashion, which has a campus in Jaipur, will host the five-day event.
Having evolved as a significant gathering of industry shapers, the IFFTI event would attract a large number of veterans in the fashion sector. Experts such as Yohji Yamamoto, Romeo Gigli, Simon Lock, Jeffry Aronsson, Rajeev Sethi, Manish Arora, Ram Sareen and Christopher Sanderson are likely to share their thoughts and vision on the business of fashion.
According to a release quoting Pearl Academy group director A.K.G. Nair here, think tanks in design, technology and business of fashion from 35 member institutions of IFFTI – representing 19 countries – along with several enterprises and institutes from India would converge to discuss the issues and opportunities pertaining to the rapidly evolving fashion sector.
Exchange of trends
Mr. Nair said the conference would ensure a cross-border exchange of fashion ideas and trends among the industry representatives from all parts of the globe, thereby enriching all stakeholders: “Cognizant of the global interests of Indian fashion designers and manufacturers, the event provides a unique opportunity for our talents to show the world what India has to offer.”
IFFTI chairperson Satoshi Onuma said the fashion and design excellence being brought into India through the conference would place the country on the global platform of fashion education. He affirmed that the idea of fashion had “struck a universal chord” with multiple fashion events occurring across continents.
Since its inception 14 years ago, the IFFTI has grown into a comprehensive international organisation representing leading fashion higher education institutions in the areas of design, technology and business. The Foundation presently comprises 35 members from 19 countries.
The global gathering of fashion academics and designers will also deliberate on the sectors such as high fashion, textiles, home textiles, mass clothing, accessories, handicrafts, footwear and jewellery. A simultaneous agenda will highlight the experiences, challenges and opportunities that the industry visionaries foresee.
Retail leaders from Reliance Retail, Shoppers Stop, Levi Strauss among speakers
On 13th Feb 2012, Pearl Academy of Fashion organized ‘Retail Connect 2012’, a seminar which witnessed the participation of educationists like principals, deans & faculty members from leading colleges in and around Chennai, along with retail industry experts, who deliberated on the current trends in the fashion industry and the future placements opportunities. Mr. S Balasubramaniam, Chairman, City Union Bank Ltd graced the occasion as the Chief Guest at the event held at The Aruna Chennai Sterling Road.
With the changing dynamics of the fashion and retail industry in India, PAF has been constantly working towards making education more relevant for its students. The institute provides its students a strong network of global partners and industry associations. The seminar discussed important trends in retail industry. At around 13% contribution to the GDP and 9% employment of the national workforce, retailing is undoubtedly a strong pillar of the Indian economy and a sector offering huge opportunities. Indian retail industry is on verge of a revolution; hence, the requirement for more skilled manpower is on the rise.
Mr Ramalingam, Director, Pearl Academy of Fashion, Chennai, said, “We place special emphasis on our curriculum and associations to ensure that our students are industry-ready when they pass out from PAF to give them an edge in employability. Seminars like these are our way of further strengthening our industry connect, keeping up with various trends in industry and showcase the talent of our students.”
In line with the changing market scenario, the institute has also launched two new courses this year including Fashion Retail Management, in association with Shoppers Stop & IIM Ahmedabad and Fashion Merchandising.
The other key speakers present were Shri M Shantanu Ghosh, Shoppers Stop Ltd, , Mr Jayaprakash Gandhi, Career Consultant and Analyst, Shri Jatindra Mishra, , Reliance Retail Ltd, Shri G Natarajan, , Levi Strauss India, Prof Winfred Chelliah, Educational Consultant, Mr MG Dawood Mia Khan, Qaide Milleth College etc.