Amy Joseph- Lingerie Business Head, LIWA Trading Enterprises
During a recent launch of the latest in the lingerie world, we met with Amy Joseph, the Lingerie Business Head at LIWA Trading Enterprises, an entity that is behind some of the region’s leading lingerie brands in the Middle East, including La Senza, Dita Von Teese, Fine Lines, Ambra, and the newly launched Isla & Evie, to name a few.
Having worked in retail buying for over 17 years, across various industries including apparel, footwear, lingerie and homeware, Amy has ample retail experience under her belt and leads the buying, planning, design and product development team for lingerie and sleepwear at LIWA, equipped with her creative eye combined with a commercial and trading mindset.
Amy’s work with LIWA involves continuously evolving diverse lingerie portfolio, by expanding individual brand’s retail offering. We ask her more about her life and career in the UAE.
How did your journey into the UAE begin with lingerie brands and can you elaborate which brands you are currently representing?
My journey into the UAE actually has had two parts. I moved to the UAE in 2015 for about three or four years before going back home to South Africa, where I am from originally. And then at the end of last year, I moved back again with LIWA to head up the lingerie team. Lingerie is a key strength for us, which is why we are expanding with the additional brands that we have brought on board. We have on board La Senza, Isla & Evie, Dita Von Treese, Ambra, Fine Lines and Gossard.
Isla & Evie is our new homegrown brand that we have developed with our design and product development team, specifically to address the needs of the consumer and tap into some of the global trends that we are seeing along the lines of comfort and wire free. And then we also host guest brands, which is Dita Von Teese, beautiful Burlesque inspired lingerie collection designed by Dita herself, which is quite phenomenal.
Then we have Gossard, which is our British heritage brand that we have brought into the stable and very excited to have them on board. They are lingerie experts, and then we also have some Comfort brands, which is key to our strategy as well. We have two brands originating from Australia, and the whole ethos is really around expressing who you are, being yourself, no filter, no photoshop, really embracing who you are and being comfortable in your own skin. The idea is to stay focused on fabrics, stretch, seam, free and our brands like Skiny and Ambra give women a lot of options.
What brought you into the world of Lingerie and was it always a passion for you to be in the apparel business?
I have been in the apparel business since day one, so I have had a long career with 17 years in the business. I love that fashion buying can combine my interests and my strengths as I am a creative buyer, but I also have a business interest just as a buying staff.
You said you had a modest collection – can you tell us a little bit about that?
We are so excited to be able to offer our customers something special for special occasions like Ramadan and Eid that can be worn as modest wear all year round. We have already launched our transitional spring collection with beautiful pastel tones and pops of pink and we think our customers are going to respond well to that. We have collections inspired by opulence and luxury with beautiful purple, deep emerald, green, and then a beautiful gold courting detail which is something special.
You’re passionate about almost all the brands but do you have a personal favorite? What should women pay attention when getting the right lingerie?
I think for me personally, I lean towards comfort, so Ambra is one that I gravitate to for my everyday bras, but I find something in all of them. I don’t stick to just one particular brand. To our women clients, I would definitely recommend getting measured by our staff members. They are trained to measure professionally and can recommend the right size of bra for maximum comfort.
With Amy’s passion for retail and armed with a dedicated team of individuals, who she credits as being the soul of the company, Amy is passionate about her job and champions amazing retail experiences in the lingerie sector. We wish her the best in her journey to make lingerie shopping easier for women in the region.
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