The British Fashion Council (BFC) has recently announced the launch of a crisis fund aimed at providing much-needed support to creative businesses and individuals affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The BFC Foundation, which is the charitable arm of the BFC, has allocated £1 million as emergency funds to assist designer businesses and students, with the aim of nurturing future creative talent. However, it is important to note that this initial amount is not enough to address the scale of the problem, which is why the BFC has plans to initiate a fundraising campaign.
The creation of this crisis fund has been made possible through the consolidation of the BFC talent support grants, which are traditionally awarded to promote showcasing support and business growth. Due to the global cancellation of fashion shows and events, showcasing has been temporarily put on hold. Recognizing the urgent need for assistance, the BFC is urging both the government and the industry to come together and provide significant support to the fashion sector. It is also calling on individuals to make donations to the Covid Crisis Fund to ensure that as many businesses as possible can be helped during these challenging times.
The BFC is emphasizing the importance of providing liquidity support to creative businesses in the form of grants or long-term low-risk loans that address issues such as retail cancellations and sell-through guarantees. This type of support will help companies navigate the disruptions in the supply chain and prevent a chain reaction of failures within the industry. Additionally, the BFC is advocating for rent holidays for office and store spaces to protect employment.
Caroline Rush, the CEO of the BFC, expressed the organization’s commitment to supporting businesses and individuals within the fashion industry. The BFC Foundation Covid Crisis Fund, along with the donations received, aims to provide subsidies to British businesses that require additional assistance beyond what is offered by government stimulus packages in order to overcome their immediate challenges.
Applications for grants from the crisis fund will be accepted in the next seven days, until April 10. To be eligible, applicants must have an established designer fashion business primarily focused on womenswear, menswear, accessories, millinery, or fine jewelry (excluding bridal or kidswear). The company must be based in the UK and registered with Companies House, or the applicant must be a sole trader. The majority ownership should be held by the designer or creative director, and the business should not have received significant outside equity funding. The requested grant money should have a clear purpose to support the survival of the business over the next year.
The crisis fund has already gained support from various partners, including Arch & Hook, British Vogue, Browns, Burberry, Depop, GQ, JD.com, Label/Mix, Paul Smith, Rodial, and Value Retail. These contributions will play a crucial role in assisting designer businesses led by creative talent that inspires the global fashion industry.
For more information on how to apply for the crisis fund grants, visit the BFC website [insert URL](). Additionally, if you’re interested in supporting the fund through donations, you can find more information on the BFC’s dedicated Covid Crisis Fund page [insert URL]().