The Fashion Design Council Of India, which organises the annual fashion jamboree, on Thursday announced that more than 60 international buying houses and nearly a 100 Indian retail chains and buying agencies would be at the event.
Last year, Vinod Kaul, who was the director general of FDCI then, had estimated that LIFW had generated deals worth about Rs 60 crore (Rs 600 million).
Some of the marquee international buying and retail houses that will come a calling are Okra, Saks Fifth Avenue, Saaya from Japan, Selfridges, Harrods, and Barneys from London. Indian participants include Kimaya, Raymond-promoted fashion brand Be:, Elan Couture Ltd., Ogaan, Ensemble, and Shoppers' Stop.
"The confirmation from reputed International buyers at LIFW reflects the trend that the Indian fashion industry is gaining rapid acceptance worldwide and leaving significant footprints in the global arena of fashion. We are happy to see such positive interest shown by buyers, both national and international. These are indicators supporting our view that fashion is a serious business," said Rathi Vinay Jha, Director-General, FDCI.
Billed as the largest and most high-profile fashion trade event in the country, LIFW 2005 aims at providing a platform to develop business opportunities for Indian fashion industry professionals.
This year, the corporate support for the event has also gone up with Lakme as the traditional title sponsor, Samsung as the associate sponsor and DHL, Liberty, Hyundai and liquor brand Royal Challenge as co-sponsors.
International event management firm IMG will continue to handle all the commercial logistics of the event.
According to IMG India managing director Ravi Krishnan, the LIFW is unique because nowhere in Asia do indigenous designers get as much patronage as in India.
"The event has become internationally visible and figures prominently in the international fashion calendar," he added.
IMG claimed its influential global fashion division had also leveraged its network, collaborating closely with the FDCI, to ensure that LIFW gained recognition amongst global buyers.
"We believe that this is the tip of the iceberg and we are committed in the future to ensuring that even more international buyers come to see what our designers have to offer," said Krishnan.