On November 9, 2018, the Russian Fur Union, in collaboration with Russia Fur Fashion Week, held an insightful and educational press conference at the Russian State University’s (RSU) media centre Kosygin.
Speakers at the conference included:
- Stolbov S.G., President of the “Russian Fur Union”
- Bogza A.V., Founder of “Russia.Fur Fashion Week”
- Belgorodsky VS, Rector of RSU. A.N. Kosygin
- O. Kascheev, Vice-Rector for Research, RSU them. A.N. Kosygin
- Victoria Pustynnikova, Kopenhagen Fur
- Dmitry Larionov, Saga Furs
- Ekaterina Popova, NAFA
- Victor Konstantinopolsky, founder of brand Astel
- Angelica Shakirova, Milangel brand
- Elena Shipilova, founder and creative director of the fashion house “Elena Shipilova”
- Irina Karimova, Head of the FashionEducation.ru portal and the Fashion Journalism School
- Igor Shevchenko, Russian exhibition company Kordon (MosFur, CHEPEAU)
- Alexey Semkin, general director of the exhibition “Soft Gold of Russia”
Participants discussed the following topics and questions:
- The current situation in the fur industry, both in Russia and abroad.
- Brands going fur-free, PR or trend.
- The tendency to replace natural fur with faux fur (marketing and public opinion manipulation).
- The relevance of fur in the modern metropolis. Does fur have a future?
- The introduction of high technology in the fur industry.
- Collaborations of famous designers and fashion houses of fur in the Russian market.
- Events and activities of leading players for 2019. Including coordinated actions for the development of the market, drawing attention to fur.
Participants noted an increase in competition in the fur market, due to lower demand and the emergence of surrogate substitutes on the one hand and low marketing activity among manufacturers of fur products on the other. Among the most effective tools to improve competitiveness, the participants identified:
– Increase brand awareness, due to active advertising activity
– “Investment in design”, products should stand out on the shelves and be visible
– Improving the quality of products by attracting professional staff
Igor Shevchenko (MosFur, CHEPEAU) and Alexey Semkin, (“Soft Gold of Russia”) presented projects that will allow fashion houses, designers, manufacturers to present their products directly to buyers and market experts. Each project is designed for its target audience.
Alexander Bogza presented a new project – Fur Fashion Week (www.RFFW.ru), which will take place on November 22 in Moscow. It is planned to hold shows of designers, whose collections show all the variety of furs. In addition to showing collections, RFFW will provide an opportunity for participants to chat with potential buyers in the showroom. Russia Fur Fashion Week is designed to present the fur in a slightly different quality – modern tech, relevant in the modern metropolis.
The most heated discussion was caused by the issue of manipulations, which can now be observed in the media space regarding the dubious advantages of faux fur. A possible option to bring correct information to customers is the coordinated actions of all market participants in conducting explanatory work, drawing attention to fur, including among young people. Sergey Stolbov (RFU), Victoria Pustynnikova (Kopenhagen Fur), Dmitry Larionov (Saga Fur), Ekaterina Popova (NAFA) talked about their experiences of working with young designers in the fur industry support and involvement programs.
Oleg Vyacheslavovich (RSU named by Kosygin) presented the projects implemented by the University and invited all fur market participants to interact in the framework of training staff and advanced training of specialists.
At the end of the press conference, all participants noted the relevance and necessity of holding such meetings, conducting joint marketing activities in order to popularize the fur, both in Russia and abroad.