The British Fashion Council (BFC) has named second round of recipients of the BFC Foundation Fashion Fund, supporting creative fashion businesses to survive the COVID-19 crisis. Following a £1 million emergency fund distributed in May, the BFC raised a further £500,000 that are now being distributed in grants to an additional 30 British designer businesses.
Pic: British Fashion Council
Recipients for the Fund are Camilla Elphick, Charles Jeffrey Loverboy, clothsurgeon, Cottweiler, Danshan, Emilia Wickstead, Eudon Choi, Feng Chen Wang, Fyodor Golan, Goomheo (Fashion East), Helen Kirkum, Liam Hodges, Marques’Almeida, Maximilian (Fashion East), Molly Goddard, Mother of Pearl, Nensi Dojaka (Fashion East), Nicholas Daley, Olubiyi Thomas, Osman Yousefzada, Preen By Thornton Bregazzi, Prism, Racil, Richard Malone, Roberts | Wood, Rokh, Saul Nash (Fashion East), Sharon Wauchob, Ssone, Supriya Lele, Teatum Jones, Teija, Thom Sweeney, and Wicker Wings
Funding decisions were based on a number of factors including viability of the business going forward, creative talent, employment and turnover. The BFC took the decision to support Fashion East designers in creating collections this season to secure the pipeline of creatives from the talent launch-pad led by Lulu Kennedy which celebrates its twentieth anniversary this year. A small number of start-up stage businesses were also supported to create collections for continuity based on their exceptional creativity. In line with the BFC’s focus on diversity & inclusion, the organisation ensured all funding panels had increased diversity, according to a press release by BFC.
The BFC Foundation Fashion Fund was established in March 2020, to support creative fashion businesses and individuals to survive the COVID-19 crisis. In May 2020, the BFC gave financial support and mentoring to 37 British designer businesses, with grants taken from an initial £1,000,000 emergency fund. This first round of funding was made possible through pooling the BFC talent support grants that would have traditionally been awarded for either early stage showcasing support or business growth and promotion: BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund, BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund supported by JD, BFC Fashion Trust and BFC NEWGEN.
Subsequently, the organisation fundraised an additional £500,000, allowing for applications to reopen for a second round in July. The recipients were able to apply for a maximum of £50,000 and will also be given access to BFC business support and mentoring from the BFC’s Fashion Business Network plus individual expert one-to-one mentors from across the business value chain.
The BFC Foundation Fashion Fund for the COVID Crisis has seen over 350 applications to date. All applicants that did not receive funding through this round, will be informed on new rounds of funding, government support schemes and webinars to collectively help businesses in these challenging times. The organisation continues to fundraise and will reopen applications every time the £500,000 milestone is reached.