On September 25, 2018, in Shanghai, The British Fashion Council’s (BFC) Ambassadorial President David Beckham launched the organisation’s China Partnerships Strategy supported by Stephanie Phair, BFC Chair; Dylan Jones, BFC Chair of Menswear and Caroline Rush, BFC Chief Executive.
The strategy was launched at a lunch attended by existing and potential new key partners, invited by the BFC and Mr. Beckham. Guests included Xia Ding, President of JD International Fashion; Paul David Haouzi, President & Executive Director Trinity Group; Claire Chung, China General Manager Yoox Net-A-Porter, Patrick Tsang, Chairman Tsang Group and Judy Liu, Managing Director China Farfetch.
The lunch, hosted at The Middle House Shanghai confirmed £500,000 worth of deals including JD.com and Ruyi’s co-sponsorship of the BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund, JD.com’s support for the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund and support from Britain’s Department of International Trade. In addition to deals done, the BFC continue to explore the next stage of their innovative partnership with VIP.com and their long-term partnership with Fung Retailing Group.
The development of the BFC’s China Fashion Business Network is a key pillar of development for the next 12 months, and many attendees at the lunch pledged their support to assist the BFC create a network of credible partners across investment, licensing, manufacturing, property, communications and retail in China.
David Beckham, BFC Ambassadorial President said: “Promoting the British fashion industry in China is an important part of my new role with the British Fashion Council. I hope that through events like today we are able to shine a light on the incredible creative talent we have in the UK and promote that talent on a global scale. The opportunity in China for connecting creatively and driving investment into British fashion is huge. Today we are able to show real commitment from Chinese businesses to future fashion leaders in the UK and in parallel, share our experience, knowledge and platforms with emerging Chinese designers.”
Stephanie Phair, BFC Chair commented: “China has always been a key market for British designers, from emerging businesses to established brands. There is a growing appetite for British fashion in China, which is why we are delighted to launch the BFC’s China Partnerships Strategy in Shanghai to help designer businesses navigate an broad and complex market. We look forward to working with all our existing and new Chinese partners as well as with David, whose support and network are instrumental in promoting the best of British fashion.”
Dylan Jones, BFC Menswear Chair commented: “We are delighted to be able to re-instate the BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund thanks to the co-sponsorship of JD.com and Ruyi, who have committed to two years of support for our brilliant emerging menswear designers in the UK. It is also fantastic to have the support of such a great ambassador in David Beckham who has already become a huge force within the BFC. The last British designer to win the BFC/GQ Designer Menswear Fund was the extraordinary Craig Green, a talent and business that continues to go from strength to strength.”
The BFC’s China Partnerships Strategy is focused on three key areas and solidifies the organisation’s commitment to making access to the Chinese market easier for British designer businesses:
- Support for emerging talent with mentoring on the Chinese market
- Partnerships of Fashion Weeks: stimulating demand through content and access, in relevant cases supplying that demand through retail partnerships in the UK and China.
- Network development of investors, creatives, influencers, media, retailers and high-net worth individuals to partner with British designer businesses on local growth strategies