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Wool Stocktake : AWI Annual Report 2009-10
In July 2009, AWI launched its Merino Casual autumn/winter 2010/11 collection at the SpinExpo trade show in New York. This inaugural Merino Casual collection was a collection of distinctive knitted and woven garments and fabrics that combine casual comfort with style, functionality and performance. The collection demonstrates the natural versatility of the Merino fibre, with a range of relaxed garments suited to business, party, everyday and street or casual wear. We have developed the Merino Casual collection, together with our Woolmark supply chain partners, to address the global trend toward the casualisation of fashion and the more informal style of dressing. Busy lifestyles and changing workplace fashions have reduced the need for consumers to have multiple wardrobes -- and there is also an increasing desire for individualism. Today's consumers are seeking garments that are versatile, that can be worn in different situations and environments, and that ultimately save consumers' time, effort and money. A range of novel dyeing and finishing techniques has been applied to the Merino wool to create garments with distinctive textures and aesthetics. Following a very positive response at the season's textile trade shows around the world, our technical teams in Asia then worked to transfer the technology to the suppliers of some of the major retailers and brands. AWI s new Merino Casual collection positions Merino wool to take advantage of the casualisation of fashion. Merino wool is truly a fibre for all seasons. If anyone needed any proof, then they should take a look at the new Merino CoolTM collection of lightweight yarns and fabrics that AWI released in early 2010 to inspire buyers and merchandisers for the spring/summer 2011 season. Benefiting from the natural properties and soft handle of Australian Merino wool, the Merino CoolTM collection is made from fine yarns, some with a higher than normal twist, making it ideal for high fashion and smart casual trans-seasonal garments. This second annual Merino CoolTM collection is now available for cool knits as well as wovens. The original International Wool Secretariat's (IWS) Cool Wool' program, launched nearly 30 years ago, sought to change the perception of wool from being only a heavy, warm product. In many ways the campaign was very successful. However, AWI's new Merino CoolTM takes the concept even further for the 21st century with even lighter weight fabrics and yarns. The new range of lightweight Merino CoolTM woven fabrics are defining Merino as a natural fibre that can be worn with comfort 52 weeks of the year, not just during the autumn/winter season. The new collection is the result of AWI collaboration with Woolmark and Woolmark Blend licensees around the world. It is a global collection showcasing the products of European, Turkish, Korean and Chinese manufacturers. Through their technical expertise, the licensees have created finer and finer yarns and fabrics, which make Merino CoolTM work so well in spring and summer wear. The Shower Clean Suit -- the suit that can be cleaned using a domestic shower -- which was a joint product development between AWI and leading Japanese suit retailer Konaka & Co Ltd has been very popular and well received since the launch in Spring 2008. Since the launch of the 'Shower Clean Suit', Konaka & Co Ltd has extended the Shower Clean product range to the Shower Clean Dress Shirt' made of Merino wool, also with AWI's technical assistance. For this spring/summer 2010 season, Konaka introduced new Shower Clean Merino Shirts, which are whiter than the first generation range, as well as Shower Clean Men's Shoes to complete their Shower Clean series. The new Shower Clean Merino Shirt, released in May in Japan is made of 80 per cent wool and 20 per cent polyester. It comes in five different colours including the new whiter shade, and is priced at 6,195 yen. The shirt is sold at over 350 Konaka and Futata shops across Japan. A new television commercial advertisement was launched in May, celebrating the expansion of the Shower Clean line. Konaka says the Shower Clean Suit is the best selling item in the store and has sold 230,000 units since the launch. REPORT OF OPERATIONS -- MARKETING & OFF-FARM R&D
AWI Annual Report 2008-09
AWI Annual Report 2010-11