Fur Shopping Festival and the interview of Ioannis Korentsidis Kastorian Fur Association President
Fur Shopping Festival will take place will take place 1-3 November, 2018 at the International Fur Exhibition Cente6 in Kastoria.
This year’s event, catering for retail and wholesale sales of fur and leather goods, is expected to attract commercial buyers from all over the world as it did in the previous two years.
With the submission of participation forms having started on Monday, August 20, fur businesses both from Greece and other countries have already shown great interest in participating.
The deadline for participation form submission is August 31st, 2018.
The interview of Ioannis Korentsidis Kastorian Fur Association President
1)How did you become the President of the Kastoria International Fur Fair and how did you become involved in the fur sector?
I grew up in the town of Kastoria, the only fur production center in the Western world, whose local economy is based almost exclusively on the fur industry. If that weren’t enough, my father founded the family fur business in 1959. Naturally, my involvement in the fur sector was practically a given.
Fur-making, however, was not something that I was indifferent to. The craft of fur-making is a particularly attractive and creative occupation, providing considerable opportunities for developing business activity.
Fur-making is not just a job to me; it is a challenge to which I have devoted my whole being.
As for being elected to head the Kastorian Fur Association, which is responsible for the Kastoria International Fur Fair (KIFF), that has to do with my desire to contribute to the fur sector, which has offered so much to our homeland. Of course, it also has to do with the trust and support that furriers have given me, and I try not to disappoint them.
What I strive to do, after all, in my capacity of president as well as a professional, is to help the local fur sector and Kastoria develop even more so that they can become the biggest fur center worldwide.
2)Was the Kastoria Fur Shopping Festival your idea?
The Fur Shopping Festival started during my term of office at the Association, which commenced in the summer of 2015. Apart from the Kastoria International Fur Fair, which has been held unfailingly every year since 1976, we all believed that an additional event was needed that would target the consumers, who would be able to visit and purchase the fur products of their liking.
So, in November 2016, we organized the 1st Fur Shopping Festival with the participation of 63 Exhibitors. From the success of this new event in terms of visitor numbers, it has become apparent that we made the right decision.
3)How does it work?
The Fur Shopping Festival is a three-day, wholesale and retail event that celebrates fur and the town of Kastoria. Visitors can find a huge range of ready-made fur and leather garments and accessories at affordable prices for all tastes and styles at the International Fur Center, the event venue.
4) Any news on the next International Fur Fair?
The 44th Kastoria International Fur Fair will be held from 2 to 5 May, 2019. There will be even more improvements made to this event, which, based on the interest we see in the market, will bring together the biggest fur businesses in Greece and abroad as well as thousands of visitors/buyers from the major markets of the world.
In fact, at the 44th Kastoria International Fur Fair will be held from 2 to 5 May, 2019, we managed to attract buyers from 43 countries, important deals were sealed with Exhibitors. We firmly believe that this upward trend will continue in next year’s Fair. In addition, we will place special emphasis on the Fur Fashion Gala, where the A/W 2019-2020 fur creations—the crème de la crème of the furriers’ collections—will be showcased.
As you can see in this video made in your office during the last Kastoria International Fur Fair, I really took care to highlight my passion for Kastoria companies and Greek furriers. What should be done to bring back Kastoria as main producer of major fashion brands?
Both fur sector officials and all fur entrepreneurs continue their efforts to further develop the Kastoria fur sector. We believe that by improving our product—which stands out for its quality in any case —and by launching it in the fashion hubs of the world, we will be able to achieve this goal.
5)Which are your goals for Kastoria International Fur Fair?
The goals we have been working towards since the inception of KIFF are to make it a significant commercial and fashion hub.
We want it to become an international platform that will bring together the biggest Greek and international fur industry businesses and will create opportunities for significant trade deals.
To a large degree this has already been achieved since the most significant fur businesses participate in each and every event we organize, covering the whole of the exhibition space. In fact, we would like to extend the space so that even more businesses from Greece and abroad that weren’t able to join us in the past can now participate in our events.
6)What are your goals for the upcoming Fur Shopping Festival?
Similarly, we would like to broaden the Fur Shopping Festival as well so that it can be established as an important event for the international fur sector. After all, it is a relatively new event, which in a mere two years has managed to attract both fur producers as well as buyers and draw the interest of the trade market and consumers worldwide.