Mercedes-Benz, New York Fashion Week’s title sponsor since 2009, is threatening to cut ties with the IMG-produced event, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Of course, since the event jumped from midtown’s Bryant Park to the Upper West Side’s Lincoln Center in 2010, it’s no secret that it has become less of an exclusive showing of the next seasons clothes and more of an opportunity for anyone to Instagram outfit and runway shots and geo-tag the tents.
With IMG’s plan to move NYFW to a new venue once again—thought to be downtown Manhattan—it’s rumored that Mercedes-Benz is prepared to end its sponsorship. As it stands now, many top designers choose to show downtown at off-site locations anyway, confirming that Lincoln Center just isn’t really that cool anymore.
Whether this instance of friction between IMG and Mercedes will result in an actual divorce or is just a ploy for Mercedes to renegotiate its deal with IMG, the threat of a non-Mercedes-sponsored fashion week is a big one. The NYFW events generate $865 million annually for New York and bring 110,000 multimedia, individuals and designer contacts to the city twice a year, THR reports. Only time will tell what will come of Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week, but it appears that major changes are imminent, so stay tuned for further updates.