Get to know CURVE’s Pierre-Nicolas Hurstel
“Now, as we are looking forward, CURVE will definitely continue evolving season after season to keep supporting our community.” – Pierre-Nicolas Hurstel.
Pierre-Nicolas, with all of the developments happening in retail and intimate apparel, what do you see as the singular most important thing CURVEXPO does for the lingerie world?
The value chain of the Fashion industry is strongly disrupted by technology and new consumer needs. It creates a lot of threats & opportunities and it questions most of the established business models. However, the vast majority of the volumes, the revenues and even more the profits still rely on the fundamentals of the industry’s organization.
The most important thing in order to strengthen the industry’s fundamentals and make sure they are sustainable is to support manufacturers and independent retailers (no matter how big they are, or whether they are digital or not).
I personally feel that we’re experiencing — at the same time — uncertainty and innovation from both retailers and brands. How is CURVE changing and adapting to this retail world?
Times have been uncertain for a while now… But looking back at CURVE’s 10 year history, the economy has never been at its best! Yet the CURVE community has grown stronger and stronger season after season, retailers and brands have been with us for years – some of them since the very beginning in 2007 – so I guess we have been doing a good job at adapting to this ever changing retail context. It was a great honor to celebrate the 10 year anniversary with all of them last February, and we were very humbled by their trust and thank you.
Now, as we are looking forward, CURVE will definitely continue evolving season after season to keep supporting our community. We will keep on helping retailers and buyers as much as we can through always more personalized and curated services, to help them build the best possible offer for their stores. And we will continue working very hard to connect the brands with the most adequate buyers, and promoting them, months before our shows even starts. Our new online platform is the year-long extension of the show, a real marketplace where we expose brands the best we can for them to shine, attract and connect with the CURVE community.
What’s your advice to retailers and brands who want to innovate and grow?
Our advice is for them to continue betting on safe values: exhibiting in trade shows and keeping relationship with buyers ongoing. This is something EUROVET shows can help achieve, as they have the opportunity to take advantage of our marketing tools: newsletter, show directory, brand page & homepage news on our website, collection preview, trend seminar, floorplan logo, meterboard, targeted e-card…
That being said, the two other essential things to prosper and progress in this market are, in my opinion, the understanding of new consumers and constant reassessment of one’s business model. We ourselves work endlessly on the evolution of our own business model: improving knowledge of our clients – including the final consumer, integrating new technologies and closely observing the latest developments in the fashion and textile industries among others.
It should not be forgotten that knowledge of clients, datas and experience, as well as technology are today a significant part of the business world throughout all levels of the industry from sales, to marketing, supply chain, design…
Brands and retailers are no exception and need to feed on all of these to have the chance to innovate and grow.
You’re in a unique position to see an overview of the lingerie landscape what do you see as the most positive trends in lingerie?
Common word is to say that everything has already been done in fashion and lingerie does not seem to make exception. There are no millions way to make a beautiful bra that fits! Yet we have seen very positive trends emerging and developing over the past years that will keep growing for the best – I hope.
I personally find the breaking down of “barriers” between innerwear vs outerwear, intimates vs apparel very positive as this continued phenomenon really follows how the new consumer is playing with and living in the product.
Lingerie is no longer being considered as something that has to be hidden under layers of more fashionable garments. This crisscrossing of industries and mix-matching within fashion departments is also an incredible source of inspiration for new business opportunities. I’m curious to see what is coming after the athleisure craze.
Another very positive trend is the increased awareness about one’s body uniqueness. Lingerie associated with research, technology and design can be the first layer of “soothing” garment and make people feel better and prouder of their body lines or body history. I am a big fan of smart textiles and cannot wait to see how future developments will associate with fashion and apply to lingerie to really improve the consumer lives.
Just because we all work in lingerie, doesn’t mean this all we’re about…what are some things people in our industry might not know about you? What are your interests and passions?
I combine my life as a man and as a father. I like to make them happy by cooking – a predisposition that comes to me from my mother but especially the pleasure of eating well. To compensate, I started to run again a few years ago. I also participated to the NYC marathon with the ambition to improve each time my performance. I am also a great music lover; every year for 15 years, I meet my friends to participate to a music festival. It gives me the opportunity to see them again and listen to good music!