On Friday 5th April, 2019, Lagos Fashion Week will host Fashion Focus Fund Live, a business plan pitch presentation to determine the recipient of the Fashion Focus Fund.

Launched last year, Fashion Focus Fund Live invites Fashion Focus finalists to present their business plans to a panel of judges for the opportunity to access the Fashion Focus Fund – a cash grant of N5,000,000.00 (Five Million Naira), aimed at supporting the development of the next generation of emerging African fashion talent. In addition, they will be enrolled into a year-long creative and business mentorship programme.

The 2017/18 Fashion Focus finalists that will be presenting at a closed session to judges who will select the recipient of the N5,000,000 (Five Million Naira) grant are: Faith Oluwajimi(Bloke), Cynthia Abila (Cynthia Abila), Gabriel Solomon (Russell Solomon), Adenike Adegboye (Demure by Denike) and Jermaine Asiedu (Jermaine Bleu).

Speaking on his journey in the last year, the first Fashion Focus Fund recipient, Emmy Kasbit said,

It has been a great experience being part of the Fashion Focus programme. The grant received as well as the mentorship from Ijeoma Ogbechie (Avivere Pret) has enabled me to make great strides in my business.

This year, the Fashion Focus Fund Live presentations will also involve past Alumni of the programme. The stakes are higher with a N10,000.000 (Ten Million Naira) grant for the 2017/18 Fashion Focus Finalists as well as Alumni.

In partnership with Sunlight, two (2) Fashion Focus Alumni (female) will have the opportunity to receive a grant of N2,00,000.00 (Two Million Naira) each to support their businesses. To access this grant, they will present a business plan to a live audience, who will be voting for the winning presentations. The two women with the highest votes will be awarded the grant of N2,00,000.00 (Two Million Naira) each.

Also new to the Fashion Focus Fund Live presentations is a N1,000,000 (One Million Naira) Audience Favourite Prize for a 2017/18 Fashion Focus finalist. After closed presentation sessions with judges, the Fashion Focus finalists will have the opportunity to present their business plans again but this time, to a live audience for the chance to be voted the Audience Favourite. The finalist with the highest votes from the audience will be awarded the Audience Favourite Prize of N1,000,000 (One Million Naira).

Contributing to the growth of emerging designers is essential to the development of the industry, the Fashion Focus Programme was created for this reason and continues to exist extending our involvement to the entire African Continent, and exploring more ways to impact fashion entrepreneurs. We are excited to be expanding our reach this year, with not only one, but potentially four recipients who will benefit from a Ten Million Naira grant to support their business

said Omoyemi Akerele (Founder #LagosFW & Style House Files).

Fashion Focus Live is an initiative of Lagos Fashion Week and Style House Files, Supported by FETSWallet and Sunlight (Unilever).

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