The Coronavirus is currently sweeping the nation causing panic and even some hysteria. Many people are stocking up on toilet paper and water because everyone could be affected by this widespread virus. While Coronavirus can have devastating effects on people and different environments, it has also had a large impact on the fashion industry. A lesser impact of course, but still many things are changing.
Many designers and others in the fashion industry decided to skip the Milan Fashion Week last month and that seemed to only be the beginning. Due to this outbreak, many companies are facing many issues such as supply chain problems and low demand. No one wants to travel right now or even order anything that could possibly be contaminated. Since Italy is currently on lockdown, there is hardly any demand for luxury items which is resulting in a heavy loss in sales.
The buying process has changed because many merchants and dealers cannot travel and meet face-to-face. Designers have to buy different pieces and materials based on pictures and videos instead of actually getting to see and feel the product.
According to GQ “only 9 percent of luxury goods transactions take place over the internet." This is a number that I originally thought would be much higher. The Coronavirus will have an impact on luxury sales in the near future because many people do not want to go out or travel for these items. Online sales will increase but that will not compensate enough for the loss of in-person sales.
The two biggest luxury watch fairs in the world were supposed to take place this year back-to-back for the first time ever. These fairs are held in Switzerland but are being canceled due to the recent outbreak and travel restrictions.
It is really unknown when anything beneficial will come out regarding the Coronavirus, so we will just have to wait and see. One thing that can definitely be said is that it looks like 2020 will be a terrible year for the fashion industry and even worse for the global economy.