14 March 2012

Fashion Industry Forum #3 Fashion Financing

Starting a successful fashion business involves investing much more than dollars, creativity and design. We are entering an era where designers need to realise there's a need to be business savvy to survive.

Andreas Klinger from Lookk.com a platform for designers to enter the market by online start up which creates the essential online tools, look books, pop up stores -short sales & Pre order stores for labels and designers.

He explained that today fashion is all of the sudden to slow in an over saturated market. Everything needs to move at a faster rate, from production to communication. The next generation of consumers expect immediacy. Social media, Internet communication will eventually take over from the likes of Fashion weeks.
Emerging designers are still playing the old game and trying to just raise interest from buyers and press but the reality is the consumer is far more important than ever. They need to know the customer, everybody fails because you don't have a market. Designers need to become entrepreneurs as well as creative artists. Understanding that the brand has to match the product.

George Svinos - KPMG

A Business plan is important from the start to help capture that imagination. Implement a plan to avoid obstacles, keeping honest to a plan or foundation. Evolve the plan along the way as you interact with your stakeholders remembering the end goal doesn't change.

Q & A & audience discussion.

Q. Why should a designer take an investor on?
A. George "To become part of your business as long as the investor is bringing real value and worth to the business."

Kirrily Johnston on starting her label, would she doing anything differently? In the beginning there wasn't social media, you need to be tenacious and smart about who you go to about business advice.

Don't worry about investors too early. Andreas Klinger

Think about investment partnerships as a marriage where time, expertise and money can form a powerful relationship or ugly divorce.

Daniel Bryant - PPD Advisory

Signs of stress can be picked up to 12 months before trouble it could be missing an order or late paying of suppliers. Fashion mistakes could also mean under estimating business and expanding too early in unfamiliar waters.

In summary no matter what area of fashion we work in we have to be more business savvy, respect and be mindful of relationships we invest in and have a sound plan. The future will be more fast paced and even more reliant on new media to reach target consumers and stakeholders.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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