IMG to stage New York fashion shows

IMG, an entertainment management and marketing agency, plans to buy the rights to stage the biannual New York fashion shows, the Associated Press (AP) reported.

The deal to sell the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week franchise was approved on Dec. 13 by the board of directors of 7th on Sixth, which includes designers Joseph Abboud, Donna Karan, Nicole Miller and Calvin Klein.

Terms were not disclosed, but the Council of Fashion Designers of America will benefit from the transaction and use the funds for its charity and industry activities, the announcement said.

“This brings us more solidity and validity,” Fern Mallis, executive director of the CFDA and 7th on Sixth, told the AP. “We’re selling, we’re not selling out.”

Once the deal is final, Mallis will move to IMG.

Stan Herman will remain as president of the CFDA and will form an advisory committee to continue the liaison between the CFDA and IMG concerning Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.

7th on Sixth and IMG already had a business relationship, with IMG helping with event management and securing sponsors for Fashion Week, the nation’s top showcase for designer collections. Retail buyers, fashion editors and celebrities fill the front rows of the runway shows.

The CFDA plans to return to its roots, concentrating on the culture of fashion and developing professional standards, Mallis said.

Fashion Week for fall 2001 designer collections opens today and runs through Feb. 16 in the tents at Bryant Park in midtown Manhattan. About 80 shows are scheduled as a preview for retail buyers and the fashion press.