LONDON and NEW YORK and HONG KONG: WGSN, the world's leading style and design trend forecasting service, today announced the launch of FONTIS, an innovative, multi-channel, digital platform designed to seamlessly deliver inspiration and insight to world renowned companies at the intersection of fashion, style and commerce.

Named after the Latin word for 'source' or 'spring', FONTIS utilizes cloud computing technology to restructure all of WGSN's 600,000 pages of content including design packs, images, trend forecasts, market analyses, reports and more, so designers and style executives can search for, and find, WGSN's content in a highly personalized and efficient manner. FONTIS transforms the interplay and effectiveness of creative teams, buyers, visual merchandisers and marketers, dramatically improving speed to market, de-risking range planning and confidently predicting breakthrough trends and the next best-sellers.

"We are very fortunate to have a loyal and passionate customer base, who loves our content. They rave about its depth and richness and are clear no other trend forecaster provides anything close to our level of inspiration and insight," said Susanna Kempe, CEO of WGSN. "Until now our Web platform has not kept a pace with our market-leading content. Today that changes. The new site is everything that our content is: beautiful, authoritative, cutting-edge and engaging. It will deliver inspiration, insight and action seamlessly."

Left Brain, Meet Right Brain

Every element of FONTIS has been created with the intention of helping users unlock the value of WGSN's robust content and fascinating insights, while improving work flow and design processes. Users logging on to WGSN FONTIS have access to a tri-level navigation system. Depending on the user's objectives, they can begin their creative journey by entering through the 'Product Lifecycle' path, 'Product Categories' path or 'Inspirational Content' path. As users delve deeper into the cloud, the most relevant tools and content are pushed toward them, increasing efficiency and productivity.

One of the most innovative highlights of the new platform is the visual search function, which allows users to click on any portion of a WGSN image to bring up instantly content related to that design detail from WGSN's extensive information database. The visual search function allows designers to immerse themselves organically and naturally in the creative and inspirational process without rules or pre-determined pathways.

"The FONTIS platform is the well-spring of winning product design, range planning, merchandising, marketing and sourcing strategies, as well as the source of global consumer insight and future macro trends that help integrate these functions and their output within an organization," added Kempe.

To test the effectiveness and utility of FONTIS, WGSN convened a worldwide panel of clients to advise on its development process and to beta test the new platform. Advisory panel clients ranged from major international apparel retailers and brands to individual designers and included Sears Holdings Corporation (SHC), ASOS and Perry Ellis International.

"WGSN has long functioned as our 'crystal ball,' providing the insights and information we need to be successful in a very competitive market," said Julie Colantuono, manager of color and trend services, SHC. "After testing FONTIS, it quickly became clear that the new platform helped us to unlock even more content and insight than ever before and allowed us to use that content in ways that were not technologically possible until now. We are extremely confident that this new platform will lead to greater efficiencies and, frankly, greater product design."

About WGSN

WGSN is the global authority on style and design. The company identifies and analyzes current and future style trends and provides its customers with state-of-the-art online tools that that can be used to create commercially successful products and services. WGSN defines and shapes wining style and design for over 36,000 customers globally. WGSN is head quartered in London and has offices all over the world including Milan, New York, Hong Kong, Seoul, Los Angeles, Melbourne and Tokyo.

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Added: September 9, 2010 Source: WGSN
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