Jan 14, 2022
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Tommy Hilfiger names winners of Fashion Frontier Challenge

Jan 14, 2022

PVH’s Tommy Hilfiger has named the winners of its third Fashion Frontier Challenge, the dedicated global programme designed to “find and support ideas that lead to a more inclusive fashion landscape”.

Rwanda's Uzuri K&Y was one of the winners - DR

The winning names are Netherlands-based Lalaland and Rwanda’s Uzuri K&Y.

They were selected at a virtual event this week at which the six finalists pitched their concepts to a jury panel. 

The winners share a prize fund of €200,000 and receive a year-long mentorship with experts from Tommy Hilfiger and from graduate business school INSEAD.

Lalaland is a platform that uses artificial intelligence to generate customised and inclusive synthetic models of different ethnicities. It was awarded €100,000. 

The same amount went to Uzuri K&Y, a Rwanda-based eco-friendly shoe brand using recycled car tyres from sub-Saharan Africa and employing local youth.

Meanwhile South-Africa’s Clothes to Good, a social enterprise that creates micro-business opportunities and jobs for people with disabilities through textile recycling, was also awarded €15,000.

The six finalists had been whittled down from 430 start-ups from 22 countries who’d originally submitted their ideas last January.

The programme for this latest year particularly aimed to “amplify and support Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) entrepreneurs who are working to advance their communities, while fostering a more inclusive future for the fashion industry”.

And it was interesting that for the first time, the public was able to participate in the initial phases of the challenge, casting digital votes to help narrow down the applications to identify the finalists. Alongside Tommy Hilfiger associates at the final event, they were also invited to vote for their favourite pitch to award that additional €15,000 to one of the finalists.

Entries for the next challenge open in March.

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