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ASR partners with Class to pull fashion and streetwear crowd

By Tiffany Montgomery
January 22, 2009 5:55 AM

ASR and Class Events are joining forces to create a show within a show at ASR at the San Diego Convention Center starting with its fall show.

Insight, Howe, WeSC and Modern Amusement are some of the brands that have signed on to show at Class, which will run concurrently with ASR Sept. 10-12. 

ASR Group Show Director Andy Tompkins told me that the Class event, run by Jason Bates, will offer turnkey solutions for brands and will be product focused rather than marketing driven. Andy said both shows bring their own strengths to the table and to house them under the same roof, but with separate entrances and vibes, will be more convenient for buyers who service both the action sports and fashion markets.

Buyers will flow freely between both shows but brands are hand-selected by a jury to show at Class, he said. 

The new partnership could impact Agenda, which specializes in streetwear and fashion brands and stages its show at the same time as ASR in downtown San Diego. 

Here's the release about the partnership:

ASR and CLASS Events Create CLASS @ ASR

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, CA (EMARGO UNTIL January 22, 2009) - Action Sports Retailer (ASR) and CLASS Events have entered into a licensing agreement to create a new trade show that is the first of its kind, CLASS @ ASR. This exclusive event debuts on September 10-12, 2009 in San Diego, CA and will run concurrently to ASR at the San Diego Convention Center.

CLASS @ ASR will feature a juried group of 100+ emerging and core crossover fashion and accessory brands such as Alphanumeric, Cpt, Design by Humans, Fiberops, Howe, Insight, Lucre Eyewear, Modern Amusement, Original Penguin, O'Quinn, Smooth Co., True Love False Idols, and WeSC. The new event's independent setting that focuses on design and experience during the trade show, versus mass-market appeal.

The new show will attract a different segment of buyer to ASR, along with retailers that previously have supported both CLASS Events and ASR. CLASS @ ASR will provide the opportunity for these influential surf, skate and street designers to interact directly with premium, upscale fashion and resort boutiques that they don't normally have access to in the action sports marketplace, revitalizing retail business in a new way.

"The partnership between ASR and CLASS Events creates a totally new business tool that is more than the sum of our parts," says Andy Tompkins, ASR Group Show Director. "ASR exhibitors will benefit from an influx of boutique retail buyers that CLASS Events attracts and action sport buyers looking for new labels can bring in more variety from one stop."

"This is an exciting time as this takes the strengths from both CLASS Events and ASR and creates a powerful hybrid that is going to better serve the fashion apparel and action sports industries at the same time, vastly expanding our outreach, influence and vision of how business should be done," explains Jason Bates, CEO of CLASS Events.

The show will operate with a level of social awareness, featuring progressive efforts including organic food from local farmer's markets, recycled products, and spa treatments for retailers, to name a few. As with ASR, CLASS @ ASR is closed to the public. It will have its own entrance and registration for select retailers, as well as its own music, lighting and ambiance.

"A platform to unite fashion and action sports brands has been needed for some time," Lane Saunders, Partner and Buyer for The Closet explains. "The high level of service and curated brand mix at the last two CLASS trade shows provided me with a very productive and inspirational business experience. Combining the strength and influence of ASR with the novelty and edginess of CLASS will create an exciting trade show that represents the California Couture style that The Closet is known for."

Learn more about the events at ASRbiz.com and classtradeshow.com.
About ASR:
ASR, produced by Nielsen Business Media, is a full service trade show whose goal is to create market and product high quality trade shows and educational conferences. ASR is the leading action sports industry trade event, bringing together top manufacturers, retailers, industry advocates and media to conduct the business of surf, skate, snow, swim, style, moto and youth culture. Now in its 27th successful year, ASR gathers over 500 action sports brands and approximately 6,500 retail buyers and decision makers two times a year, with spring and summer/fall season shows in San Diego. For additional information regarding ASR, check out ASRbiz.com.

About CLASS Events:
CLASS Events revitalizes the fashion trade show by creating a highly stylized, service-oriented environment that inspires its vendors and retailers to do business instead of pushing corporate marketing initiatives. Located in Santa Monica, CA, CLASS brings the fashion trade show back to California, where it all began. Uniting a select group of designers and tastemakers, artists and musicians, CLASS is able to adapt and respond to the new, exciting way of doing business. By offering the best design talent in clothing, accessories, footwear, gifts and beauty, CLASS gives designers and retailers the tools and inspiration to make this transformation as we move into the new decade.



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