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January 28, 2020

Brand and supplier “matchmaking” event aims to drive green innovation

Copenhagen Fashion Summit and Copenhagen International Fashion Fair (CIFF) have collaborated on a new business space aimed at helping small and large fashion businesses implement solutions to create greener products.

By Beth Wright

Copenhagen Fashion Summit and Copenhagen International Fashion Fair (CIFF) have collaborated on a new business space aimed at helping small and large fashion businesses implement solutions to create greener products.

At a curated trade and exhibition area at CIFF, C+ will present about 100 solutions that cover the entire value chain and host panel discussions and a “matchmaking” programme with facilitated and pre-scheduled business meetings between fashion brands and solution providers.

The C+ space is inspired by Global Fashion Agenda’s Innovation Forum, which has been a permanent fixture at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit for the past few years.

Global Fashion Agenda, which organises the annual Copenhagen Fashion Summit and the annual Pulse of the Fashion Industry report, wants to change the way fashion is produced, marketed and consumed. It also collaborates with a group of strategic partners including Kering, H&M, Target, Bestseller, Li & Fung and the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) on setting a common agenda for focused industry efforts on sustainability in fashion.

By teaming up with CIFF, one of the largest and longest-running fashion fairs in Europe, C+ taps into the Scandinavian audience and will reach the fair’s nearly 2,000 exhibiting brands.

“We must accelerate the pace of progress, and we believe that connecting brands with solution providers is what will help them advance most quickly,” says Eva Kruse, CEO of Global Fashion Agenda and organiser of Copenhagen Fashion Summit.

“Copenhagen Fashion Summit is restricted in terms of how many companies we can engage, which is why we’re beyond excited about our collaboration with CIFF and having the opportunity to access its huge network in the Nordics. Creating direct connections between fashion brands and innovative solutions aligns well with our mission to mobilise and guide the fashion industry to take bold and urgent action on sustainability.”

Kristian Andersen, chief innovation officer at CIFF, adds: “Despite improvement, the fashion industry has yet to reach its sustainability potential and the pace of positive change doesn’t match the projected growth of the fashion industry, which will put an unprecedented strain on planetary resources.

“This collaboration is a great opportunity to inspire more fashion brands to embark on or further their sustainability journey.”

C+ is due to launch in August during Copenhagen Fashion Week and will be open to visitors from 4-5 August 2020.

The move chimes with a report released last week by Dutch sustainability initiative Fashion for Good (FFG) and Boston Consulting Group (BCG). ‘Financing the Transformation in the Fashion Industry: Unlocking Investment to Scale Innovation’  found that the fashion industry needs to embrace and accelerate technological innovation in the field of sustainability to future-proof the industry, with US$20-$30bn in annual financing required.

Authors added innovations emerging in the fashion industry in response to sustainability pressures present “unprecedented” investment opportunities.

Meanwhile, Global Fashion Agenda (GFA) recently released the 2020 edition of its ‘CEO Agenda’, which has been updated with a focus on what GFA calls “one of the biggest issues of our time” – challenging the traditional concept of growth and prosperity.

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