Today, the British Fashion Council (BFC) is delighted to announce its annual programme of talent support. In the financial year 2021/2022, the BFC remitted over £1.3m in funds to designers and scholars. £932,500 was paid by the BFC Foundation as part of the BFC’s grant giving initiatives including scholarships and talent support schemes BFC NEWGEN, BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund, BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund and BFC Fashion Trust; over £400,000 was paid to designers through brand partnership collaborations secured by the BFC.
The BFC Foundation (Registered Number: 1185152) supports the future growth and success of the British fashion industry by focusing on education, grant-giving, and business mentoring. Co-chaired by philanthropists and investors Narmina Marandi and Tania Fares, the charity aims to raise funds to maintain and grow its grant giving programmes with the support of an influential international Patronage Programme. In its first three years, the BFC Foundation received total donations in excess of £8m*. This year the charity is able to support 35 designers and a number of students through financial support grants and mentoring.
Narmina Marandi & Tania Fares, Co-chairs BFC Foundation said: “When we launched the BFC Foundation Patronage Programme at the end of 2020, we set an ambitious fundraising target. Despite a difficult year for so many, an incredible group of individuals stepped forward to donate and support the BFC Foundation and its grant giving initiatives. The annual funds raised by the charity allow us to continue the important work the BFC does in supporting and nurturing talented designers at all stages of their careers, as well as making sure that the British fashion industry remains diverse and open to all”.
Caroline Rush CBE, Chief Executive British Fashion Council commented: “The UK has a reputation of being the leading launchpad for innovative and creative talent mainly due to its world-leading universities for fashion education. This year’s list of designers truly showcases London’s reputation as a global capital for the creative industries, and we are delighted to be able to help so many of them through the BFC Foundation. Congratulations to all the designers and a big thank you to all the funders, judges, and mentors for making the UK’s talent support network one of the most robust in the global market.”
For the second year, Clearpay, London Fashion Week’s Principal Partner, will continue to support all the initiatives. Core to the brand’s business is supporting new and emerging brands, with the goal of accelerating the fashion and retail industry in 2022 and beyond.
The BFC would like to thank CHANEL and Dior Men for their partnership and named scholarship programmes that combine essential funding with unique access to each luxury brand; as well as Bags of Ethics, Jimmy Choo, TikTok and Tommy Hilfiger for their donations to the BFC Foundation.
In line with the BFC’s strategic pillars, NEWGEN, BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund and the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund support creativity in business while BFC Fashion Trust empowers growth.
CHARITABLE GRANTS FOR CREATIVE EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS:
BFC NEWGEN is the most established talent identification scheme globally and designers are identified by their creativity, strong design aesthetic and point of difference. BFC NEWGEN supports the very best emerging talent and aims to build global, high-end fashion brands of the future. The 2022/23 NEWGEN recipients are:
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NEWGEN sponsorship is awarded annually to ready-to-wear and accessories designers, offering them financial support, showcasing opportunities and mentoring to develop critical skills to future-proof their businesses. The BFC delivers individual mentoring and business training sessions to assist the designers as they develop their infrastructure, with pro-bono legal services from DLA Piper, and tax and accounting support from RSM. The BFC NEWGEN committee is led by Sarah Mower MBE, BFC Ambassador for Emerging Talent.
Follow the BFC NEWGEN TikTok account to find out more about all the new recipients @bfcnewgen.
BFC/GQ DESIGNER FASHION FUND
Established in 2013, the BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund aims to celebrate exceptional talent and empower businesses to play their part in positive growth through bespoke business mentoring, professional services, and awarding of a cash prize. Today the BFC is delighted to reveal the shortlisted designers for the 2022 BFC/GQ Designer Fashion Fund.
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All shortlisted designers were invited to present their collections and business plan to a panel of experts chaired by Caroline Rush CBE, Chief Executive, British Fashion Council and Adam Baidawi, Head of Editorial Content, British GQ & Deputy Global Editorial Director, GQ. All designers will have the opportunity to participate in a mentoring programme through the BFC’s Designer Initiatives team, with access to funders, industry experts, and pro-bono legal services from Sheridans.
The winner will be announced during London Fashion Week presented by Clearpay June 2022.
BFC/VOGUE DESIGNER FASHION FUND
Established in 2008, the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund aims to celebrate exceptional talent and empower businesses to play their part in positive growth through bespoke business mentoring, professional services, and awarding of a cash prize. The winner of the 2022 BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund is:
The 2022 shortlisted designers were Chopova Lowena, Completedworks, E.L.V. DENIM, NEOUS, Nicholas Daley, Richard Malone, Richard Quinn & TOVE. All shortlisted designers were invited to present their collections and business plan to a panel of experts chaired by Caroline Rush CBE, Chief Executive, British Fashion Council and Edward Enninful OBE, Editor-in-Chief, British Vogue & European Editorial Director, Vogue. Quinn will receive a £200,000 cash prize while all designers will have the opportunity to participate in a mentoring programme through the BFC’s Designer Initiatives team, with access to funders, industry experts, and pro-bono legal services from Mishcon de Reya.
The Fund receives the generous support of Burberry, British Vogue, Clearpay, Paul Smith and Rodial.
CHARITABLE GRANTS TO EMPOWER GROWTH:
BFC FASHION TRUST
The BFC Fashion Trust empowers positive business growth through financial grants and mentoring. It supports projects that enable brands to think strategically and accelerate sustainable growth through finance, business support, and pro-bono legal services from Taylor Wessing. Grant money relates to a defined project that will be delivered within a set period. All recipients articulated how their project aligns to their broader business growth vision and shows a clear return on investment. BFC Fashion Trust is open to all ready-to-wear collections and/or accessories.
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The BFC would like to thank Zedonk, the Fashion Business Network and one-to-one mentors for the ongoing support to all initiatives, as well as Charlotte Tilbury and TONI&GUY for providing make-up and hair styling teams for the BFC Foundation Impact Announcement.