By Paul Pannone
A week ago wedding dress manufacturers waged war against Chinese sources taking American designs and selling them direct to consumers. Steve Lang takes steps to mobilize manufacturers and fund a campaign to ask for political help to stop the flood of cheaply made, inferior products that are copied and pirated.
So far the IBMA has not officially supported Steve Lang’s attempt to change the future of American wedding dress manufacturers.
Lang’s move is upstaging a reported “clandestine campaign” by the IBMA that remains unverified by any top-level official. eWedNewz discovered a war chest of a quarter-million dollars illegally held by the organization floats around instead of being deployed to help fund the effort of protecting the industry.
Sources near the story say,” It’s rumored that the IBMA has a $250K nest egg in the bank. This total has remained the same for the past three or four years. Doesn’t anyone think that it’s strange that the account isn’t earning interest? What kind of bank account is the IBMA using? Is it a checking account? Is it a savings account? Which bank? How does anyone know if the money actually exists? If the IBMA did or does have a quarter of a million dollars in cash and hasn’t invested it, can someone/someone explain this brilliant financial strategy? Maybe the IBMA should have considered US Savings Bonds. It would be fascinating to know the reason that the IBMA refused to fund Steve’s counterfeit gown initiative.
The questions continue to come faster than answers, as the IBMA drags its feet and refuses to co-operate with Lang. On several occasions eWedNewz read emails from Lang to Larry Warshaw of the group asking for the IBMA top join forces. The plea remains ignored. Meanwhile dissatisfied ex-members respond favorable to Lang’s move.
You will have my 100% support. Please tell me what you need. I had contacted the IBMA board and David Lesser, then President of IBMA many times. Needless to said, NO RESPONSE. I asked Peter Grimes of VOWS Magazine a few times to talk to the IBMA. Again NO RESPONSE. The IBMA is more interested in using their organization to negotiate advertising rates with magazines than fighting for what is good for the industry.
This is giving our industry a very bad name, making us look like a bunch of pirates to our brides. Consumers think our bridal shops are pirates charging $1500 for a gown when they can buy the same dress on the internet– from the same manufacturer– for $300,” according to Nick Yeh.
Other manufacturing supporters coming forward say they want to help in the campaign in whatever way they can help. The movement is also assisted by bridal publications recognizing the first real movement towards a solution.
“It’s the first truly positive move that has been made to solve the problem. Is there anything that I can do to help you follow-up on it?I can do two things right away:
1) I can forward your email to every manufacturer that I do work with and those that I’m pursuing as well with the simple question “Have you seen this.”
2) I can mention this email in every conversation that all Bridal Guide sales staff has with manufacturers and retailers. While retailers may not support the concept financially, it’s important for them to know that you’re leading the initiative,” responded Bridal Guide Magazine.
eWedNewz will continue to cover this story. We’re interested in anything you wish to add.
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