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Q&A: What to Expect from Sportswear Pro

With Sportswear Pro set to be launched in Amsterdam this March alongside FESPA Global Print Expo, we caught up with Michael Ryan, Head of FESPA Global Print Expo and Sportswear Pro to find out what to expect

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Michael Ryan, head of FESPA Global Print Expo and Sportswear Pro

What can we expect to see from the inaugural Sportswear Pro exhibition?

Sportswear Pro will comprise an exhibition space, which will welcome an array of suppliers showcasing end-to-end manufacturing solutions for sportswear production, and a one-day conference. 

With the industry-wide trend of increased speed-to-market driving production efficiencies, Sportswear Pro will focus on the key areas of automated and customised manufacturing, from design to finished garments.

How does the strapline ‘Opportunities, Created’ reflect what the exhibition will offer?

The strapline reflects how the production capabilities in fashion and sportswear are much broader than retailers and manufacturers may realise. 

At the event, we’re encouraging attendees to explore the many opportunities in garment design, manufacturing and embellishment, such as the benefits of switching to more sustainable materials and processes, smart wearables as a new product offering and ‘just-in-time’ production. 

We’re also offering a platform where visitors can access advice from industry experts and network with like-minded professionals to gain inspiration on the next steps for their business.

What has gone into the planning of this exhibition? 

We planned to launch the inaugural Sportswear Pro in 2020 which was delayed due to COVID. Since then, we’ve been waiting for the right time to re-launch the event. 

This year, with consideration of the broader event calendar, we see an excellent opportunity to launch Sportswear Pro and bring a new segment audience to our existing textile client base. 

Over the past five years, we’ve undertaken extensive research into the market and have been in close liaison with exhibitors and visitors about the needs of the market. 

With this feedback and in collaboration with industry experts we have planned an event with a carefully curated content plan which best serves the audience. 

Why is this an event that visitors to the exhibition should visit?

Sportswear Pro will be a pivotal platform for garment producers to discover how to capitalise on on-demand production and market trends, including personalisation and sustainability, and convert them into business growth opportunities. 

The exhibition will welcome suppliers including Aisten Lab Technology, Ara NV, MTC Textile CP., Ltd and Ricoma International Corporation who will showcase the latest solutions for every step of the manufacturing process – from design (CAD/CAM and 3D body scanning) to production (CMT [‘cut, make and trim’], bonding and knitting) and decoration (printing, engraving, embroidery and laser appliqué systems). 

What’s more, visitors can also access a broader calibre of textile solutions within FESPA Global Print Expo.

What are the opportunities for print and sign companies in the sportswear arena?

For regular FESPA visitors, Sportswear Pro will add a new event and dimension for visitors with an interest in textile printing, garment decoration and sportswear. The event will complement our existing textile proposition naturally.

Sportswear is a growing sector so the event will offer our existing visitors new business opportunities and an overview of innovative production processes. 

Anything to add? 

The event will incorporate a one-day conference programme, welcoming an array of experts including:

•Samantha Taylor, Founder of The Good Factory and Krisjanis Ozols, Head of Operations Strategic Partnerships & R&D, Printful, who will discuss near shoring, supply chain resilience and improving agility in manufacturing

•James Lawrence-Jones, Consultant and Serena Bonomi, Circular Economy Innovation & Strategy, who will talk about the power and potential of personalisation

•Paul Foulkes-Arellano, Founder, Circuthon, who will explore innovations in materials and fabrics for sportswear

Finally, visitors will also have the chance to attend our new Personalise Make Wear feature to participate in end-to-end production tours of the latest technologies for personalised and sports-related merchandise, from brands including Brother, Tajima, Klieverick and GreenTex.

I look forward to welcoming the readers of SignLink to the Amsterdam RAI this March!

For more information on the event and to register, visit: https://www.sportswearpro.com/.

Don’t forget an entry ticket to Sportswear Pro also grants you free access to co-located events –  FESPA Global Print Expo, European Sign Expo and Personalisation Experience.

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