The July financial statement for the Italian leathergoods industry. This morning Aimpes/Mipel presented the industry’s current economic situation and new trends expected for the forthcoming international leathergoods industry fair from 3 to 6 September. We’ll start with the fair: in addition to confirming its organizational cooperation with theMicam, Mipel is launching a series of initiatives “to open up to the city of Milan”, rather in the style of Fuorisalone. There will be cocktails at the Triennale (3 September) with the awards ceremony for The Icons competition, the Glamorous Night in Darsena on 4 September (“a show to celebrate the creativity and fine quality of Italian products”) and the collaboration with the New Academy for Fine Arts (NABA). All of this is part of a project seeking to focus greater attention on the active relationship with international buyers. Moving on from trade fairs to the current economic situation, the Italian leathergoods industry ended 2015 in the black, on the back of foreign sales: 6.5 billion euros (90% of the overall production value of 7.2 billion euros), showing an increase of 6% in value and 3% in quantity. The start of 2016 was much less impressive: “The slowdown in luxury sales has been confirmed by the trend in exports of the first three months of the year,” says Aimpes, “introducing a temporary new element into the positive trend of the last few years: foreign sales, amounting to 1.6 billion euros, have shown a slight fall of 0.05%.” The fall of 3.3% in leather products needs to be assessed carefully, along with the fall in women’s bags (-1.7%) and the consequent jump in synthetic articles (+12%). “We are the best in the world,” comments Aimpes president Riccardo Braccialini (in the photo), boosted by estimates from some sources indicating that Italian leather goods account for 30% of total world sales in the luxury sector.