Buyers’ Commentary

”Despite all the difficulties under COVID-19, I am very impressed by how quickly CENTRESTAGE lived up to this historic challenge, enabling us to come together and be inspired by the latest fashion trends.”

Laure Martel , Head of Buying Fashion, 

“I am not only thrilled to see how quickly CENTRESTAGE has adapted to the current global situation, but I am also delighted to see the exciting variety of designers available on the digital platform. 

In addition, the digital fashion shows allowed us to perfectly bridge this year's physical constraint and lifted our anticipation of a hopefully personal meeting at fairground in the coming season.”

Florian Müller, Fashion Consultant, Trend Scout & Systemic Business Coach,

“In times of lock downs, keeping abreast of new trends and brands is really difficult for buyers. That is why I am more than happy to be invited by the HKTDC to view their selected fashion shows at CENTRESTAGE 2020, exploring fashion market trends in Asia and beyond at my home desk.”

Janina Lina Wesselmann, Fashion Ecom Expert & Buying Consultant, Germany

 “I appreciate CENTERSTAGE’s strong passion to support design talents in hard times like this right now. This new digital platform to promote fashion, brands, designers serves as an actual digital bridge which we all have been waiting for, allowing us to stay connected with the market trends outside our home offices.

CENTERSTAGE online was not only perfectly curated to capture the essence of fashion creatives across different categories, it also enabled reaching out to those fashion talents we could not have discovered on our own, especially during this lock-down bubble.”

Julian Daynov, Trend Analyst, 
Brand Scout & Buying Director, Germany

At first, I was perplexed about the virtual format but I found several positive points in the end. Since I could not watch the shows live due to agenda constraints, this format allowed me to enjoy them whenever I wanted, view again and again, and share the links with others. This is very convenient. Also, I found that CENTRESTAGE went all out to be creative. It still could not beat the physical experience, but it showed great creativity and imagination. I was amazed at what HKTDC and designers were able to produce. It was a very nice experience. I liked the FASHIONALLY show very much for the mood and ambience as well as the amazing and grand setting!”

Song Pham, Founder, 

“Given the pandemic this year, the phygital runways at CENTRESTAGE online was quite a different experience from physical shows in previous years. What struck me most was the seamless integration of a convenient virtual platform and a stage setting with multi-angles, allowing us to learn about the latest fashion trends.

I was especially impressed by the Next in Cheongsam fashion show. The opening parade showcased a perfect blend of fashion and facemasks, urging everyone to wear masks during the epidemic to protect themselves and the others.

I look forward to visiting Hong Kong to participate in CENTRESTAGE next year to appreciate fashion shows through physical exhibition and to learn more about new designer brands. Compared to a virtual platform.”

Luo Yang, Principal, Karen Image Design Education, 
Chongqing, Mainland China

“As a result of the pandemic, CENTRESTAGE migrated to the online platform and has brought a very good experience on viewing the virtual fashion shows. The designs and models of each show merged seamlessly with the backgrounds, completed with strong creativity and outstanding design concepts. I felt like viewing physical shows. The fashion shows were so fascinating. It could be even better if everything moved along at a slower pace. The trailer was also very inspiring. I look forward to visiting CENTRESTAGE next year.”

Li Yun, Founder, 303 Fashion Boutique
Chongqing, Mainland China

“Overall, the experience was better than expected. Especially the ability to really to be able to see the designers’ collections without any distractions. Since it was digital, you were able to view the shows as many times as you liked to see the garment details. I also enjoyed the virtual background surrounding the runway shows. I thought it was very futuristic.”

Marvin Revells & Senior Buyer, 

“It is quite a new experience. For offline or physical runway shows, you can only see the models and collections from one particular angle on your seat. However, I can see them from various angles for online runaway shows this time. I like the “Hong Kong en Vogue” show for their nice collections. Also, the CENTRESTAGE setting was awesome, showcasing different perspectives of the designers' creativity.”  

Hisashi Ogiso, CEO, 
Strategy & Design Labo Inc., Japan


“I visited CENTRESTAGE in 2018 and found the platform well-organised with emerging talented brands from Asia. Although I could not visit the show physically this year, I enjoyed the digital runway shows and found some interesting brands. I am also impressed by the Hong Kong Young Fashion Designers’ Contest. Several young designers such as Chan Tsz Chiu and Wong Lai Yu showcased appealing features and styles. I really like them. Keep up to expand further in the future.”

Mitsuo Nakahshi, Assistant Director,
Barneys Japan


“In these unprecedented times, fashion capitals around the world are doing digital runway shows to stay in the business and CENTRESTAGE is no exception. I am very impressed with CENTRESTAGE 2020, it is a testament to the capabilities of HKTDC as a fashion trendsetter. I like the “Next in Cheongsam” show and I am interested in Karen Chan’s sartorial collection.

Samuel Wong, Founder,


“The experience was positive overall. I liked the easy access to the digital platform with a whole list of events and links to digital content. The connection with award-winning designers at Hong Kong Young Fashion Designers’ Contest was engaging. I enjoyed the virtual settings but it would be even better to have included outdoor settings in some of Hong Kong’s characteristic locations to highlight the event and the host city’s beauty.

Alessandra Della Morte, Consultant,


“CENTRESTAGE 2020 going digital completely met my expectations. I think it is very hard for a virtual event to generate the kind of energy and excitement of a physical show but I have to say CENTRESTAGE really succeeded in doing this fantastically.”

Danny Stienen, Senior Buyer,


“The digital background of runway shows really impressed me. It feels like watching the shows right next to the actual runway. I liked the Next in Cheongsam show in particular because all dresses are outstanding!”

Sanunphat Namsopith, Brand Director,
FreakOut, Thailand


“When I was watching the runway shows, I had a mixed feeling. Some shows were all over the place and some were very focused on certain type of audience. I admired and appreciated the creator’s ambition and the way of putting out his or her concept in a bold style. I enjoyed Fashion Hong Kong the most, I felt the creativity of designers and their desire to try things new and fresh.”

JuHun Lee, Buyer,
Lotte Department Store, Korea


Buyers’ Commentary

“We are a fashion retailer operating four multi-branded stores in Nanjing. Our business has been up and running for six years, carrying over 20 womenswear brands mainly from Korea and Spain. We focus on everyday wear and collections for work environment. This is my first-ever visit to CENTRESTAGE to find something new and interesting. Japanese brand BASIC presents very attractive and stylish bags with unique colours and designs. The women’s collection showcased by Hong Kong brand Lapeewee comes with good quality fabrics and nice shapes. Their styles suit our customers’ preferences very much. Another potential brand is Super-X from Hong Kong that offers a special fabric for sportswear. Further talks will be held to conclude business. I expect to finalise orders within two months. Order amount is subject to pricing. I would like to visit the fair again and meet more brands for business development.” 

Vesper Lu, Purchasing Manager,
Nanjing Hua Qimao Trading Company Ltd., Mainland China

“We are the biggest fashion retailer in Myanmar with a history of over 30 years. We currently operate 14 stores under the brand of 119 Fashion Complex in the capital city of Yangon. The group continues to expand and aims to open at least one to two stores each year. This is our second-year visit to CENTRESTAGE to source new designer brands. The fair features many interesting brands and new inspirations. We are now in touch with KOTRA to explore cooperation with a host of Korean brands. Their bags and backpacks are very attractive. Consumers in Myanmar are very fond of Korean fashion items so we are keen to source more Korean brands. At CENTRESTAGE, we also find the footwear showcased by Italian brand SUSIMODA appealing while the flats for women by Macau’s Lexx Moda come with very nice patterns. We look forward to developing business and carrying the brands at our stores.” 

Aung Kyaw Soe, Marketing Manager,
Living 9 Co. Ltd, Myanmar

“Leflair is a leading online retailer in Vietnam selling a wide range of fashion, beauty and homeware products. Our e-commerce business also serves customers in the Philippines and will extend to the Malaysian market next year. We focus on luxury fashion brands in particular. I have got in touch with 15 brands at CENTRESTAGE this year. About half of them are Korean brands. WHY-RI ROVER from Korea, Lexx MODA from Macau, as well as two Italian brands - STELLA SOFIA and FRANCESCO BENIGNO, are among those with the best potential for business development. I am interested in the Korea brand’s women’s collections and the other two brands’ footwear. I expect to conclude business with them within one month. Average order usually involves 500 to 800 pieces. This show features so many fashion brands from different parts of the world. I really like it.” 

Marilyn Teo, Head of Cross-border,
Leflair, Vietnam

“WANDER specialises in the supply of unique clothing, bags, accessories and homeware in Taiwan. We offer a mix of new and vintage items including well-maintained used apparels and antique items with special design or a story to tell. We operate two outlets within department stores in Tainan and Taichung with a third outlet opening in Taipei soon. This is our first visit to CENTRESTAGE to explore opportunities. We love the work wear collection showcased by Hong Kong brand SFZ & SON. Further talks will be held to select the best designs and conclude business. Initial order amount is estimated at US$1,000. We usually source products through agents. CENTRESTAGE is an exciting event and this is an eye-opening experience for us.” 

Febie Lin (left), Founder, and Sinic Choy (right), Founder,
WANDER, Taiwan

“Our company is operating Tom Greyhound concept store in Paris selling some 60 brands of fashion collections. We are part of Korea’s Hyundai Department Store group. I am looking for new designer brands at CENTRESTAGE to expand our portfolio. At the FASHIONALLY COLLECTION runway show, I spotted the women’s and men’s collections presented by two Hong Kong brands, namely NECRO POON and DEMO. I really like their sophisticated designs and minimalist styles. Another Hong Kong brand VVISSI also offers very nice designs while the footwear collection by Italian brand NOOVA has strong appeal. They will provide the line sheets including the pricing and delivery details. We will negotiate further to prepare collections for Fall/Winter 2020. Initial orders are expected to be around US$5,000 to US$10,000 each. I hope to visit the show again.” 

David C.Y. Kang, General Director,
Handsome Paris SAS, France

“16seventyone seeks to introduce more fashion brands to Malaysia. We represent a number of fashion and footwear brands especially those from Malaysia and Singapore. Customers like department stores and retailers can source suitable items effectively through us. CENTRESTAGE offers a solid platform to find new designer brands. The show looks even more exciting this year with the presence of more menswear and footwear collections. I have found some nice menswear by YMDH from Hong Kong and I.N.K from Macao. The sandals showcased by SUSIMODA from Italy look very attractive. I am also in touch with a Mainland China exhibitor to explore OEM production for sports shoes. Average orders start at US$2,000 each. The fair is getting better to meet my sourcing needs.”

Richard Tsen S K, Founder,
16seventyone Sdn Bhd, Malaysia

“Isetan Mitsukoshi is a major department store operator in Japan. Our Isetan stores and Mitsukoshi stores are located in different cities across the country. I am visiting CENTRESTAGE for the second consecutive year to find more designer brands. At last year’s show, I established business relationship with a Korean womenswear brand. So far, I’ve already found two new brands. Japan’s AMAUD offers some interesting womenswear, like dresses and jackets made of kimono fabric. Hong Kong brand SUN=SEN presents collections with unique styles and decorations. I will negotiate further to conclude the business. Japanese consumers are looking for more and more designer brands. CENTRESTAGE offers a great opportunity to meet new brands from different places. I will certainly visit the show again. It has been a successful trip.”

Terasawa Mari, Editor, Cross Merchandising Division,
Isetan Mitsukoshi Ltd., Japan

“Timaginarium is running two fashion stores in Sydney specialising in medium-ranged high fashion collections. This is my first visit to CENTRESTAGE to explore opportunities. I am looking for up-and-coming designers to enrich our offerings. Design concepts and the quality of fabrics are the primary concerns. I have found three potential brands from Korea including VEGAN TIGER, L-AND and ELESS for various womenswear. We will discuss further for possible business cooperation. The bags presented by Italian brand MAJO are very nice and stylish. I also like the design concepts and prints of the collections by Hong Kong brand VVISSI. I look forward to negotiating with them further. This show offers a good opportunity to source new brands and ideas. I hope to see CENTRESTAGE grow further.” 

Alexey Oleshov, Director,
Timaginarium, Australia

“In business for 10 years, Zalando is the biggest fashion e-tailer in Germany. We carry a large number of international brands mainly from Europe and the US, providing a wide range of products from women’s wear, sportswear, shoes, accessories, jewellery and watches. I am visiting CENTRESTAGE for the first time to find new brands especially from Asia. So far, I’ve found a very nice jewellery brand LESIS from Taiwan that offers appealing collections with a mix of gold and pearls. This show also features some interesting young designer brands for women’s wear. I am still looking around for fashion brands from Hong Kong, Korea and Taiwan at the fairground. The concurrent Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair creates a good synergy. I’ve also identified two brands from Mainland China and Taiwan for automatic watches. Their prices are very competitive for their quality. On fashion and jewellery items, I am now waiting for the line sheets from the brands for further discussions. Orders usually involve 500 to 1,000 pieces each. CENTRESTAGE is a good show with new inspirations.” 

Catherine Beckert, Senior Buyer Watches,
Zalando Se, Germany