Fashion Forward in Moldova.

December 15, 2014

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local brands have participated in the campaign and presented their collections at the fashion show as of September 2014

Through the USAID Competitiveness Enhancement and Enterprise Development II program, Chemonics worked with 12 Moldovan fashion companies to launch the inaugural promotional campaign titled Din inima branduri de Moldova or “From our heart – Moldovan brands.” The campaign helped the companies unite their efforts and leverage shared marketing resources to promote their products. The message of the campaign appealed to Moldovan consumers and built awareness that domestic brands could compete on quality and price with international imports.

Following this initial success, 10 more companies joined the next campaign, which eventually became a biannual activity with fall and spring collections. Each season’s campaign is launched with a fashion show organized in partnership with USAID, the International Women’s Club, and the Moldovan Fashion Producers Association. As of September 2014, more than 40 local brands have participated in the campaign and presented their collections at the fashion show.

“This unprecedented promotional campaign has changed drastically our consumers’ perception and made them feel proud of wearing Moldovan brands. Thanks to the Din inima campaign, Ionel’s sales on the domestic market increased by more than 26 percent in 2013 compared to 2012,” said Luchian.

The success of the Din inima campaigns spurred the idea to open a retail store where local companies could promote and sell their goods in a single location. With support from USAID, Chemonics, and private investment, the first Din inima store opened in December 2012 with 13 fashion companies on board. Building on this success, the project helped develop a partnership with another local investor, which brought in an additional 30 clothing companies. This partnership resulted in three more Din inima stores opening in Chisinau, the capital of Moldova.

“This unprecedented promotional campaign has changed drastically our consumers’ perception and made them feel proud of wearing Moldovan brands. Thanks to the Din inima campaign, Ionel’s sales on the domestic market increased by more than 26 percent in 2013 compared to 2012."

Tamara Luchian, Ionel Director

Working together, the companies have enjoyed the results of joint promotion. Companies participating in Din inima now contribute more than 70 percent of the promotion budget, and every dollar spent on promotion brings in an increase of $65 in sales. Din inima has also had an impact on the Moldovan fashion industry association’s membership, which has doubled from 37 to 78 companies.

Today, Din inima is a recognized brand to Moldovan consumers with its products promoted on the Internet and being worn by Moldovan celebrities, displayed on billboards, and featured on TV shows. Many more prominent Moldovans have modeled the clothing in fashion shows, and sales of clothing, shoes, and accessories have been strong in Chisinau and other large cities in Moldova. By working together, Ionel and its cohort of Moldovan fashion companies have demonstrated that high-quality, locally made products can compete with well-known foreign brands on the local market.