Breaking news: The British Fashion Council have today announced the launch of the BFC Foundation Covid Crisis Fund, supporting creative fashion businesses and individuals to survive the Coronavirus crisis…
Through its charity the BFC Foundation, the BFC is making £1,000,000 of emergency funds available, with the majority supporting designer businesses. A portion of funds will also be allocated to students, underpinning the future generation of creative talent.
To make this possible, they have pooled the BFC talent support grants that would have traditionally been awarded for either early stage showcasing support or business growth and promotion.
The BFC have thanked all of those that have made the funds possible and their partners in the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund, BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund supported by JD.COM,INC, BFC Fashion Trust and BFC NEWGEN.
To help boost the £1 million starting point, they have also called the Government to step in to work with them on significant industry stimulus, and on the industry and individuals to support the Covid Crisis Fund through donations, so that more businesses can be supported at this time.
Since the beginning of the crisis, BFC has worked tirelessly to brief Government on the challenges facing the industry but also to keep all stakeholders up to date through letters, social media updates, digital Town Hall meetings and newsletters. With this new fundraising campaign, the organisation seeks contributions that will be crucial to the survival of designer businesses led by creative talent who inspire the global industry.
The crisis has seen creative businesses fighting on several fronts. BFC calls for support for liquidity in the form of grants or long-term low risk loans that address retail cancellations and sell through guarantees and in turn will help businesses address disruption to supply chain and a potential domino effect of failure. BFC also asks for rent holidays for office and retail stores to further protect employment. As a member of the Creative Industries Federation, BFC has also campaigned for additional financial measures to protect the income of creative freelancers who play such a significant role in the fashion industry.
Caroline Rush, Chief Executive BFC said:
Now more than ever, we are committed to supportthe businesses and people that make up our industry. With the BFC Foundation Covid Crisis Fund and the donations raised, our hope is to support those British businesses that need additional subsidies, beyond Government stimulus available, to address their most urgent challenges.
Applications and mechanics for funding from the new BFC Foundation Covid Crisis Fund will open within the next 7 days, with applications closing on April 10th.
Guideline to criteria for businesses to apply are:
- Applicants should have an established designer fashion business
- The applicant’s collection should consist primarily of womenswear, menswear,accessories, millinery or fine jewellery – not bridalwear of childrenswear
- The applicant’s company should be based in the UK and be registered with CompaniesHouse or a sole trader
- The applicant’s company should be majority-owned by the Designer / Creative Director & not have had outside equity funding in any material amount
- Grant money requested should relate to a clear purpose to support the business survive over the next year