BFC/ELLE Talent Launch Pad winners

31 August 2010
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BFC/ELLE Talent Launch Pad winners

The British Fashion Council (BFC) and ELLE magazine today announce the inaugural winners of the BFC / ELLE Talent Launch Pad 2010. Six new designer businesses, Clemency London, David Longshaw, Eudon Choi, Holly Fulton, Irwin & Jordan and Yunus & Eliza, have been selected for this new initiative to develop a British retail base with professional support to develop long term business success. 

The winners of the BFC / ELLE Talent Launch Pad impressed the selection panel with their unique collections, demonstrating a diversity and freshness that would have a broad British appeal. Designers eligible to apply for the scheme were in their first two years in business.

The selection committee comprised leading British independent retailers, brand development experts and fashion influencers. The panel members were Lorraine Candy, editor ELLE, Donna Wallace, Accessories Editor ELLE, Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council, Emma Jones from Mirabelle Edgedale, Helena Christensen model and photographer, designer Sara Berman, stylist Sam Ranger and partner retailers Anna Park from ANNA, Helene Rapaport from Bernards of Esher, Julia Jaconelli from The Courtyard, Justine Mills from Cricket, Oscar Pinto-Hervia from Hervia Bazaar, and Julia Aitken from Stanwells.

All retail partners have commited to placing orders for at least one of the shortlisted designers for two seasons and to host in-store events to raise the profile of the designers to their regional audiences.

The six designers will have access to ELLE magazine’s top stylists, photographers and creative directors to devise marketing materials including images and films. ELLE UK will also give the scheme extensive editorial and promotional support.

Lorraine Candy, Editor-in-Chief, ELLE commented “With the spotlight shining on London Fashion Week we must nurture the young, emerging talent that underpins the industry - and capitalise on its new found professionalism.  There is a realisation among new British designers that as well as creative skill, business acumen is essential. We found six fantastic new names we think have potential to thrive - and it’s now up to us to help take them to the next level; to use our expertise to get their clothes on the rails and into shoppers’ hands. ELLE is delighted to be working with the BFC on this unique, mentoring project to bring a new injection of talent straight to the shops, sitting alongside hugely successful international brands.”

The Talent Launch Pad was developed as a legacy initiative of the British Fashion Council’s 25th anniversary to assist new designer businesses to develop a solid British market, have access to retail mentors and through this raise their profile regionally and nationally through editorial and professional marketing material.

Helene Rapaport, from the retail store Bernards of Esher, commented “We are delighted to promote young, fresh and exciting new talent in our store to give them the opportunity to sit with established brands, providing them with a platform for their collections to be seen.”

Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council, said “The new launch pad will give these young designers full access to the top boutiques whilst providing them with expert business advice. The competition was extremely impressive; however the chosen winners were clearly the strongest showing originality and a solid business plan. The panel believed they would benefit greatly from the support of this new initiative.”