02.06.2020 News

Interview with Sevil Uguz Interview with Sevil Uguz

We talked with Sevil Uguz about the new adapted THE NETWORKx concept and the way Corona affects her work and life.
© Sevil Uguz
© Sevil Uguz

Sevil Uguz is the founder and owner of the LNFA store in Berlin and co-founded the Berlin Fashion Week networking event THE NETWORKx. She is very familiar with what buyers, entrepreneurs and event organisers do and was a very interesting interview partner due to her complexity. We wanted to find out what impact the coronacrisis has had on her and what plans she has for the future.

How does the coronacrisis influence your work? What has changed?

Since the beginning of the pandemic, a lot has changed for the store, as well as the networking event. Like most events, our networking event has been cancelled until further notice. Of course, that didn’t stop us from working, we have developed a digital concept for this event and are currently in the process of discussing details with our partners. Overall, it can be said, that everything will take place digitally and that this will be an exciting challenge for everybody who works for events. We have already received plenty of feedback and interest. Therefore, we are hopeful that networking can also take place digitally in the future.

The changes in the LNFA concept store are more extensive and complicated. One may think that a shift to e-commerce is the right solution here too, but unfortunately this is not the case for us. We have an online store, but like many other online stores we can’t be found with SEO.

The biggest problem we have at the moment, is that there is not enough frequency. People have to get used to the mask policy first, at the moment they seem a little hesitant. Fortunately, we see improvement every day, but we don’t expect our turnover to be as usual in 2020.

As the initiator of THE NETWORKx you have started a cooperation with the sustainable fashion fair Neonyt. Networking is currently not an easy topic. Will it be possible to continue this concept anyway?

We have adapted our THE NETWORKx concept and with Marte Hentschel, we have gained a very strong partner in Sqetch. We will soon reveal more about our main partners, but we ask for a little patience…because good things take time.

What changes for buyers and what changes for the managers of fashion stores in Berlin? Which professional groups within the fashion industry will be most affected?

Buyers in most fashion stores are currently heavily involved in crisis management and may have to rethink their seasonal shopping behaviour. We have spoken to many other manufacturers who have made their collections more seasonally independent. Therefore, there will be less of a risk for unsold merchandise. The trade, the manufacturers and the production companies will be impacted the most. All of them are trying to find moderate solutions together, since they are connected and dependent on each other.

If you were to gain something positive from the current situation – what would it be?

Personally, as a single mother and manager, I am very enthusiastic about the new time management system. I feel like everything is decelerating and that people are working more productively. I also find the solidarity we have with our designers and customers is truly exemplary and wish the same for everybody else in the fashion world.

How do you think the industry will change in the medium- and long-run?

I have hope that sustainability and production sites, wherever they are located, will be more appreciated in the future. We have always depended on seasons and worked towards the needs and wished of our customers. No customers ask for hats made of wool in August and our customers also appreciate nice designs, which also appear repeatedly in our designers’ collections with slight variations in colour and print. I believe that these changes will take place, but are more likely to be seen as a long-term goal, especially among the stars of the fashion scene. We believe in sustainable consumption and the love of fashion and will continue to do so!

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