FN Platform kicks off on Tuesday, Feb. 16, and will run through Thursday, Feb. 18, in Las Vegas. Ahead of the show, Footwear News caught up with Leslie Gallin, president of footwear, UBM Advanstar.
New this season: “One of the things we are most excited about is elevating the conversation for education in business for both vendors and retailers. That’s something the industry will see more of from us. We continue to improve way-finding so retailers can better navigate the show and locate brands. Our team of ‘ask me’ people will be right on the show floor.”
Five new brands to see: Benjamin Adams, Canal Grande, Elie Tahari, Itapuã, SoleLab
Social media initiatives: “Social has become huge for us. We think it’s a great way to communicate the FN Platform brand, so this season, we will work on a couple of fun Instagram series during the show to shed light on what goes on. We also are doing a giveaway series leading up to the show, promoting #showusyoursole, where each month a different brand will give away a pair of shoes to a lucky follower.”
Hottest categories: “All the categories are relevant now because people are living a very active lifestyle, and they need shoes for each and every one of those activities. There is not one single category that stands out. Each area of our show will be robust and strongly represented this cycle.”
Most excited for: “Elevating the conversation. We can be a steward for the industry in trade, education, business knowledge and compliance issues. Right now, the buzzword is disruption. You’ ll be hearing a lot about that at our show.”
Attendance prediction: “Traffic will be up. February is always a good show for us, and I think people are excited. It’s a new year, and people are curious about what it’s going to bring. They are open to experiencing new trends.”
Business outlook: “Footwear is the one item that resonates with all consumers, so I think we are in a good place.”