UK Fashion and Textile Association wins funding to help businesses expand

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Industry body, the UK Fashion and Textile Association (UKFT), reports it has secured continued funding for emerging UK fashion, textile and footwear companies who want to grow their businesses in key markets.

UKFT said it has been working closely with government body the UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) to secure continued levels of funding for fashion, textile, accessories and footwear companies across the UK. The Trade Show Access Programme grant (TAP) is vital for small businesses who want to expand in international markets by funding their stands at overseas fashion and trade shows, the Association said.

UKFT is the largest user of the scheme which has been essential to thousands of UK business success stories over the last 25 years.

Many of the great British designers we have seen showing in London, New York, Paris and Milan in the last few weeks began their global journey through TAP funding. In the last 10 years UKFT said it has taken over 5,000 businesses to shows using the TAP scheme.

Under an agreement with UKTI the funding allows applicants to attend up to six different overseas trade shows or events with UK government support.

UKFT chairman Peter Lucas said: “We are delighted UKTI has agreed to continued support for UKFT efforts to promote first time exporters in all markets. These first steps in export are an absolute lifeline for many businesses. This is where many UK businesses make their first mark on the global fashion stage.

“We continue a close dialogue with UKTI to fulfil the needs of the whole industry, including looking at new ways to help more established companies whose requirements for the next level of support in both traditional and emerging markets will be key to growth and success.”

UKFT is supporting and promoting over 300 UK designers at Paris Fashion week this week, where it will guide them through the high profile shows. More UK designers show at Paris Fashion Week than any other Fashion Week and is a vital showcasing opportunity.