BGMEA, Good Fashion Fund to finance green SMEs - Just Style
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BGMEA, Good Fashion Fund to finance green SMEs

07 Sep 2021

The Good Fashion Fund (GFF) has joined forces with the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) to drive environmental sustainability in the South Asian country's apparel industry by financing sustainable practices and technologies.

BGMEA, Good Fashion Fund to finance green SMEs

The BGMEA and the Good Fashion Fund have inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support and strengthen the development and uptake of innovative sustainability solutions, with a focus on improving environmental and social sustainability within Bangladeshi factories.

As per the agreement, which was signed by BGMEA president Faruque Hassan and GFF fund director Bob Assenberg, the Good Fashion Fund will provide a long-term loan and technical, environmental, and social expertise to manufacturers to adopt sustainable production.

Through these joint efforts, GFF aims to invest up to US$10m in textile manufacturing companies in Bangladesh in the next two years and up to $25m at the target fund size, naturally subject to availability of funds.

The collaboration aims to provide manufacturers with access to finance and help them in building a restorative and regenerative apparel supply chain. This means the use of
recyclable and safe materials, clean and less energy, closed-loop manufacturing and the
creation of fair jobs and growth.

Launched in 2019, the Good Fashion Fund was initiated by Fashion for Good and the Laudes Foundation to drive sustainable manufacturing practices.

“Energy efficiency, renewable energy, carbon and water footprint reduction, circular economy has been the core areas of concern for BGMEA as long as sustainability and resilience is concerned. So our SMEs have to invest in eco-friendly technologies. We thank the Good Fashion Fund for extending its support to the industry the collaboration of these two organisations can be prolific to enhance the sustainability standard of the SMEs,” the BGMEA’s Hassan said.

GFF fund director Assenberg added the partnership will help support apparel manufacturers in Bangladesh to become more sustainable.

“We are committed to driving a positive change and good fashion practice in
the apparel sector in Bangladesh and look forward to working with forward-looking SME’s in the country.”

The Good Fashion Fund is a collaboration between Laudes Foundation, Hong Kong-based The Mills Fabrica, and FOUNT. The vision for the Good Fashion Fund is for manufacturers in the apparel supply chain to invest and reinvest in innovations that deliver both economic growth and good fashion practice.

FOUNT provides investment and fund management expertise in emerging countries while Fashion for Good (also acting as sub-advisor to the fund) provides an industry network and strong deal pipeline, as well as access to innovations and technical knowledge.

With a target size of $60m, the fund provides long-term US dollar funding to apparel and textile manufacturers in Asia, mainly in India, Bangladesh, and Vietnam, to implement impact technologies. The fund aims to mobilise the use of safe and recyclable materials, clean and efficient energy, closed-loop manufacturing, and the creation of better working conditions and fair jobs and growth.

GFF announced its first project earlier this year – a $4.5m investment to replace machinery in the spinning, processing, and garmenting divisions of Indian manufacturer Pratibha Syntex Limited.