The organisers of APLF have announced the trade fair will now cover the whole manufacturing supply chain to include athletic, leisure and sports fashion, from raw to performance materials and fabrics, components for the manufacture of athletic and casual footwear, sports fashion clothing and accessories.

The annual trade show will now be known as APLF – Leather and Materials+. According to the organisers, the objective of this change is to ensure that buyers’ needs are met when sourcing for different materials.

The Plus sign has been chosen “for its dynamic and innovative significance as it represents the positive energy which is related to the athleisure trend”. The sector will cover synthetic and functional materials and components for sportswear as well as components for the fashion industry.

The organisers also pointed out that as the Asian youth becomes more sports and fashion conscious, it represents a huge target group for sporty casual, or athleisure sportwears. In a report published in October 2015, Morgan Stanley stated that sports apparel and footwear sales have jumped 42% to US$270 billion over the past seven years, and it estimates the market to grow a further 30% by 2020. Asia is quickly becoming the biggest contributor to sales growth of sportwears and, by extension, the performance fabrics and innovative technology required to manufacture these products.

“With China next door and thriving ASEAN manufacturing countries just a short flight away, APLF – Leather & Materials+ is a trade event where trends are set and discussed, innovation launched and where product developers can meet all their suppliers”, the organisers said in a statement.

Located in Asia’s business hub of Hong Kong, APLF – Leather & Materials+ positions itself as a key a sourcing destination for leather and components for leather goods, footwear, garment and upholstery manufacturers, all under one roof.