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Fashion industry group urges consumers to support Christchurch labels


March 29, 2011/11.53

Last week, Fashion Industry New Zealand (FINZ) published its Fashion Impact Report on the Christchurch earthquake, examining how designers, retailers and wholesalers were faring after the February 22 disaster. There’s an extra connection to us: it was penned by Lucire’s own Vicki Matias on the direction of FINZ executive officer Mapihi Opai.
   In a statement today from FINZ, some of the report’s highlights were emphasized. ‘Some boutiques are operating from temporary sites, while those with multiple stores have transferred stock to other locations. Businesses engaged in e-commerce are also working harder to push sales online,’ says Opai.
   FINZ says that clothing merchants were hardest hit thanks to their high concentration in the devastated CBD.
   ‘Several wholesalers suffered moderate damage on the city fringe, but most manufacturing remains intact, being situated in the surrounding suburbs,’ stated the organization in a release.
   Apparel represents 13·3 per cent of physical retail in Christchurch city, ‘home to 415 clothing stores that employ 2,060 people,’ based on last year’s figures. Retail sales for 2010 are estimated to be over NZ$570 million for the Canterbury region alone.
   Retailers face the decision of whether to receive existing orders or cancel them as the season changes.
   Opai urged consumers to support Christchurch apparel companies, ‘by purchasing clothing from their online stores and catalogues.’
   She added, ‘We would like to see companies working together to create a new fashion precinct; an environment that recognizes the needs of small and large retailers alike, and presents opportunities for other creative businesses.’

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fashion / Lucire / New Zealand
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