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Kingpins Teams with Material Exchange to Offer On-Demand Denim Sourcing

Imagine having continuous access to a sourcing database of 20,000 materials from suppliers around the world.

That’s exactly what Kingpins organizers and Sweden-based Material Exchange are providing for the denim industry.

On Thursday, the trade show organizer announced the partnership with the platform, which will complement Kingpins’ physical shows and allow exhibitors to showcase their textiles year-round. The digital format will provide denim brands with tools for sourcing denim and denim-related fabrics in real-time and view detailed product data whenever they need it.

“We have never been a real estate company, selling space so that mills can sell their fabrics,” Andrew Olah, Kingpins Show founder, said in a statement. “Our goal has always been to educate, advocate and—in some instances—push the denim industry to evolve and behave more responsibly. While our in-person events are key for our industry to connect and collaborate, Kingpins is committed to finding digital solutions to support mills and brands globally.”

Kingpins’ first foray into providing digital solutions for its exhibitors and attendees was its online Kingpins24 event in April and June, which featured livestreamed content, webinars, interviews, panels and product demonstrations.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with the Kingpin Show to provide a secure platform for the materials and detailed material attribute data to the denim industry,” said Darren Glenister, Material Exchange chief executive. “The partnership with Kingpin Show will enable brands and suppliers to continue on their digital journey and source denim products instantly.”

Additional details will be announced as Kingpins and Material Exchange develop this partnership, however, the move reflects two new normals sprouting up within the industry as a result of the pandemic: an abandoning of the standard fashion calendar and a massive migration to digital methods.

A number of trade shows have also announced digital solutions, both for hosting events and connecting exhibitors with virtual attendees. Pitti Immagine and Liberty Fairs both launched virtual marketplaces to enhance their shows, and Texworld developed an AI-powered networking engine that provides smart “matchmaking” recommendations to buyers.