(Yicai Global) July 31 -- UK-based Malaysian shoe designer Pro. Jimmy Choo will participate in the first China International Import Expo with his particularly dazzling new brand.
"The import expo will gather many global brands and will bring us the opportunity to appreciate various products and craftsmanship, Pro. Jimmy Choo told Yicai Global. "We can communicate and learn from each other with a large number of elites at the fair. It will be also a great opportunity for us to exchange views and showcase our latest designs."
Choo sold his legendary shoe brand, worn by Britain's former Princess of Wales, Diana, and favored by fashion magazine Vogue, last year to Michael Kors. But the entrepreneur who "cannot lose the spirit of craftsmanship" started a new brand Genavant in February with partner Reggie Hung to create tailor-made jeweled shoes.
"Many of my clients asked why I didn't make jewelry for my shoes," Choo said. "The finest jewelry needs the best craftsmen and takes many years to perfect," he told them. After finding Huang, whose Taiwanese family has been in the jewelry business for many years, Choo had found his new passion.
"We are going to showcase our latest collection of jeweled shoes worth about CNY30 million (USD4.4 million) containing 400 to 500 carats of diamonds at the fair, Hung said. "We have signed a memorandum for a booth of more than 500 square meters with the Ministry of Commerce of China in March this year to participate in the expo."
Genavant has its main production facilities in Taiwan, but the firm also hosts a showroom in the UK. The Cambridge site is decorated like an exhibition hall, because the shoes are mainly used as art decoration and have collection value," Huang said.
China poses lucrative opportunities for the upscale brand. "We have seen the upgrade of attitudes and consumption levels of Chinese consumers in recent years," Hung said. "When consumers' consumption levels are high enough and they do not know what they want to buy, we offer them another channel," Hung said, adding that the fair is a great opportunity to promote Genavant.
"In the future, we will make more tailor-made shoes for celebrities and royals to make jeweled shoes go into everyday life," Hung concluded.
The CIIE will be held at the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai on Nov. 5-10.
Editor: Emmi Laine