The coronavirus has canceled two highly anticipated denim trade shows.
In separate statements, organizers of Denimsandjeans Japan and Kingpins Hong Kong announced show cancellations in light of the growing global health emergency. Denimsandjeans Japan, originally scheduled for March 4-5 in Sunshine City, Tokyo, has been rescheduled for Sept. 29-30, while Kingpins, originally scheduled for May 13-14, doesn’t plan on returning to Hong Kong until 2021.
“We are very concerned about the situation in China and understand that many of our exhibitors and attendees are dealing with extreme difficulties and uncertainty due to efforts to contain the spread of the virus,” Kingpins Show founder Andrew Olah said.
Other trade shows, including the NE Materials Show that was slated to take place in Boston earlier this month, as well as the NW Materials Show that was set for this week in Portland, Ore., have been postponed.
And while other shows continued on as scheduled, attendance—specifically, from exhibitors at Sourcing at Magic—took a hit. Jessie Zhang, sales director at Sourcing at MAGIC, Footwear Sourcing, told Sourcing Journal that about 60 percent of the Chinese manufacturers expected to exhibit were forced to cancel.
The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a state of emergency as a result of the coronavirus, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, whose population totaled more than 11 million as of 2018. To date, there are more than 45,000 confirmed cases and 1,115 deaths worldwide, as reported by Bloomberg.
Denimandjeans founder Sandeep Agarwal isn’t taking any chances.
“Though at the moment it is difficult to predict how long it will keep on affecting global trade and travel, we are really hoping that it will be overcome in the coming months,” he said in a statement. “We also know that the global medical community, especially the Chinese medical community and people in general at this moment, are resilient and will overcome this scourge soon.”
The March event would have been the show’s first in Japan. Previous destinations included Bangladesh, Vietnam and India. Venues and timing for the rescheduled event remain the same.
“We hope that all international visitors who had held up or canceled their visits due to the virus would be able to re-plan and visit us,” Agarwal said.
The Denimsandjeans Vietnam and India shows, May 28-29 and July 8-9, respectively, will go on as scheduled, as will the remainder of the Kingpins spring and fall shows in Amsterdam and New York.