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World fashion giants focus on Turkey

Posted on 14 February 2011

Date: 07/05/2008
World fashion giants focus on Turkey

Giant fashion houses that shape world trends are on a hunt for young and talented Turkish designers, according to an executive board member of the Association of the Registered Trade Marks (TMD).

Tuna Kiliboz, who is also CEO of the Istanbul Bijuteri company, said leading names in the world of fashion have recently developed great interest in Turkish and Ottoman themes with even Italy-based fashion designers looking to Turkey for ideas. Among those are Giorgio Armani and Gianfranco Ferre, who want to use traditional Turkish and Ottoman motifs in their latest collections.

“World brands now want to introduce new perspectives to customers and seek to become acquainted with different cultures. We should, therefore, turn our cultural differences into an advantage. We should present the world not imitations but authentic Turkish and Ottoman styles,” said Kiliboz. “Only if we set sail with our own fashion designers can we acquire status in the world fashion market.”

Rise in luxury goods consumption

Kiliboz, who is the Turkey representative for the world’s most prominent Italian brand names such as Gucci, Armani, Trussardi, Galliano, Versace Jeans and Roberto Cavalli, said Turkey currently has an upper-income consumer group that spends $200 million a year on luxury fashion products.

“An aging population, decreasing income levels and changing spending behaviors caused the number of consumers in Europe who buy luxury goods to dwindle,” said Kiliboz. In contrast, there has been a sharp rise in the purchase of designer clothes in Turkey.

The number of luxury brand names that have opened stores in Turkey within the last two years is almost equal to the number of all such stores opened within the last 10 years elsewhere, Kiliboz said.

Antalya leads the way

Kiliboz said their aim is to increase the number of stores to 100 in the next year. Specifically, luxury hotels in Antalya are currently home to stores of a considerable number of brand names. Kiliboz said the total income they earn from sales at these stores within three to four months is equal to annual endorsement of the same brands in Istanbul.

The latest trend in the world is mono-brand stores, where all products of a single brand are sold, said Kiliboz. As he noted, this is the reflection of the consumers’ changing perception of brands.

“We observe that customers in cities like Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, and Antalya, where tourism is intensive, often demand mono-brand stores. A luxury consumer wants to purchase not only a few products of his or her favourite brand but all items in its entire collection at the same time and at the same price with the world,” he said.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008 – ISTANBUL – Referans (Abridged)

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