Stormy To Support Two Black Students A Year At Cambridge University.

‘There are so many young black kids all over the country who have the level of academic excellence to study at a university such as Cambridge - however we are still under represented at leading universities. We, as a minority, have so many examples of black students who have excelled at every level of education throughout the years. I hope this scholarship serves as a small reminder that if young black students wish to study at one of the best universities in the world, then the opportunity is yours for the taking - and if funding is one of the barriers, then we can work towards breaking that barrier down.’

Bev Malik Our Retail And Buying Director, On House of Fraser Calling In The Creditors Today.

The demise of this one time giant of the high street is sad but somewhat understandable as the brand has not been able to find relevance in the drift from brick and mortar to omniretail, it’s also struggled to tap into growing markets without isolating its base consumer. Retail and the uk will ultimately bounce back but we as other countries are having an identity crisis in our department store models, that rapidly needs to be updated.

Eszter Kantor's Brexit Update

Our EU Expert, Eszter Kantor, provides us with the latest Brexit update including the European Commission’s publishing of Brexit preparedness notes and a roundup of what was discussed at Fashion Roundtable’s previous Brexit meeting.

Dr. Lisa Cameron MP Asks The UK Government On The Future of Funding for Creative Training Programmes Post-Brexit.

Margot James MP, Minister of State for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: 
“The creative industries contributed £91.8 billion to the economy in 2016, and the government recognises the important role of SMEs in this success. Under the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK will continue to benefit from EU programmes such as Creative Europe until the end of the current period (until 2020). The White Paper published on 12 July states that the Government is open to looking at continued participation in programmes, such as Creative Europe. As part of the Sector Deal published in March, government is also looking at securing the sector’s future prosperity and growth and will invest more than £150 million across the lifecycle of creative businesses.”

At What Price Is The UK Not Smashing The Glass Ceiling? Asks Tamara Cincik.

This lack of gender diversity is not only deeply worrying, as the report has not even touched on ethnic diversity amongst these women it also highlights that a lack of any women at the top of these companies is literally bad for business. FTSE350 companies with no women on their executive committee only achieve a net profit margin5 of 8.9%, whereas the figure soars by 5%, to 13.9% in businesses with at least 25% women at this level.

STEM Not STEAM Education: Not Only Important For The Arts, But Also Essential For Tech.

With UK tech businesses are growing 2X faster than non digital businesses according to TechNation, to not take notice of the numerous and diverse needs to grow that business in a market where a unique USP is a key indicator of success seems not only counter-initiative, it is also clearly bad for businesses, including our UK fashion industry which leads in global FashTech innovations, with companies such as Farfetch, Matchesfashion and Net-A-Porter headquartered in London. Especially vital in a post-Brexit landscape where immigration has played a huge factor in political decision making. If we do not have the domicile talent, how can we hope to shape the global industry of the future?

The EU Free Trade Deal With Japan - A Win For European Fashion But A UK Own Goal? Asks Eszter Kantor

The Japanese fashion market is worth $25.45bn, with a consumer who has historically bought into British fashion brands: both heritage and avant-garde. This deal is predicted to boost the EU economy by 0.8%: a trade boost which the UK has no part of for a consumer who would have bought into Brand Britain. This agreement gives European stakeholders access to one of the strongest markets in the world (third in GDP), allowing them to diversify their investments and expand production in an era of increasing instability.  

#areyourepresented, Transparency, Sustainability and Brexit: Fashion Roundtable On Tour This Summer At UK Festivals.

Fashion Roundtable took to the Sunday Papers Live stage at Citadel Festival on Sunday with a panel discussion #areyourepresented on ethnic representation in the fashion industry (currently at 9%). Karen Binns our Fashion Expert was joined by Frederica Boateng a fashion academic, Rahemur Rahman and menswear designer and celebrity stylist Karen Williams. Chaired by Tamara Cincik, the panel explored the concrete ceiling facing talent from diverse backgrounds across the fashion industry. With London now at 30% BAME residents and the rest of the UK at 13%, it is clearly a timely conversation.  #areyourepresented will be at Wilderness Festival on 5th August for Sunday Papers Live with Dr Royce Mahawatte from Central Saint Martins, our Retail Expert Bev Malik, Rahemur Rahman and Isabella Silvers from Hearst Publishing.

The Brexit Cul-De-Sac: Op-Ed by Eszter Kantor Our EU Expert.

I don't think this is the result of a Government not understanding Brexit and its implications. During the past two years several advisors, economists, policy officers, NGO and company representatives (including Fashion Roundtable) have explained the consequences both in monetary and socioeconomic terms, time and time again.

Our Response To The Brexit White Paper From The UK Government.

The greatest unknown remains however, as it is likely the EU will not accept the terms of the Chequers proposal, having clearly stated previously that they would not accept piecemeal access to the Single Market - you are either in or you are out. Tony Blair recently described the proposal as the worst of both worlds, as Leavers and Remainers unite in their opposition to the proposal. The next week will prove deeply insightful, as negotiations resume again under the new steer of Dominic Raab. The only certainty we have at the moment is that all current proposals contain major areas of concern for the Fashion industry, once again reinforcing our decision to enter the role Fashion Roundtable now fulfil.

Dr Lisa Cameron: Chair of the APPG for Textiles And Fashion On Passporting Rights Post Brexit

Dr Cameron MP: “To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he will take steps as part of the negotiations for the UK leaving the EU to seek the creation of a visa system between the UK and EU countries to meet the needs of the creative sector.
A Answered by: Caroline Nokes Answered on: 09 July 2018
The Government is considering a range of options for the future immigration system. We will​ ​build​ ​a​ ​comprehensive​ ​picture​ ​of​ ​the​ ​needs​ ​and​ ​interests​ ​of​ ​all​ ​parts​ ​of​ ​the​ ​UK, including​ ​different​ ​sectors,​ ​businesses​ ​and​ ​communities,​ ​and​ ​look​ ​to​ ​develop​ ​a system​ ​that​ ​works​ ​for​ ​all.​
We will make decisions on the future immigration system based on evidence and engagement. That is why we have asked the independent Migration Advisory Committee to advise on the economic and social impacts of the UK’s exit from the EU. When building the new system, various aspects including the creative sector will be taken into account, to ensure the future immigration system works for sectors.
We will set out proposals later this year.”

David Davis Leaves DexEu As Dominic Raab Enters.

This is one of those moments that inspires theories of elections, mass resignations and political crisis – Brexit must surely now be cancelled? No. The Prime Minister has, despite her critics, created an atmosphere of calm and stability, albeit it without the strength. Add to this, the lack of appetite from any senior Conservative to take over and the even greater lack of Parliamentary appetite for another General Election. It must be remembered that the Fixed Terms Parliament Act, brought in by the coalition, still prevents a Government from simply calling a General Election, or from calling a vote of no confidence.

John Lewis Set To Rebrand By Sophie Dyer.

It is widely acknowledged that the retail sector is going through a period of generational change and every retailer’s response will be different. For the partnership, the focus is on greater differentiation – not scale,” A spokesperson for John Lewis said in a recent statement.