French Embassy Ignites Nigerian Creative Entrepreneurs

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Boosting the Nigerian creative landscape, the French Embassy in Nigeria has launched the Lagos x Paris Fashion & Design Accelerator. This visionary program, spanning from October 2023 to June 2024, is designed to provide extensive support to ten high-potential Nigerian brands operating within the dynamic fashion and design ecosystem.

The accelerator program is poised to redefine the path to success for these emerging creatives. Its core focus lies in offering close mentorship, nurturing creativity, fortifying business acumen, and expertly guiding Nigerian talents and their teams through the complexities of both the French and global fashion industry.

This platform stands as a vibrant tribute to Nigerian creativity and cultural preservation endeavors. It champions sustainable practices and encourages cross-cultural collaborations. Simultaneously, it equips these creatives with the essential tools and knowledge to facilitate long-term and sustainable financial growth for their businesses.

The objective of this initiative extends beyond nurturing entrepreneurial skills within these ten Nigerian brands. It is equally dedicated to facilitating their access to export opportunities in France through participation in key industry events.

The program’s curriculum is a result of collaborative efforts with prominent fashion and design stakeholders. It offers a comprehensive blend of group and individual training, mentorship, and an impressive lineup of over 120 hours of masterclasses per brand. Renowned experts from France, Africa, and the Nigerian creative industry incubator, CCHUB, have collectively shaped this innovative curriculum.

Importantly, each brand selected for the program receives tailored support, acknowledging the uniqueness of their journey.

The accelerator journey concludes with a remarkable experience – an all-expenses-paid professional trip to Paris. This immersion in the global fashion capital includes exclusive access to key industry players and participation in prestigious events.

The accelerator’s components include personalised one-on-one courses, monthly mentorship sessions, high-level masterclasses, grants, an investment readiness module with pitching sessions to investors, and support for participation in a prestigious French event in 2024.

Out of a pool of over 120 applicants, the ten chosen brands represent diverse talent across various categories:

For Fashion: Lagos Space Programme, TJWHO Design, OBIDA, EKI KERE, ELEXIAY, and WAF – Wafflesandcream Limited.

For Accessories: MALIKO and Ethnic Africa.

For Design: OMI Collective and Aga Design and Culture Limited.

This Lagos x Paris Fashion And Design Accelerator, is a key component of the global program “Création Africa,” introduced by French President Emmanuel MACRON in February 2023. This program’s overarching aim is to amplify support and resources within the French diplomatic network to enrich the global creative and cultural industries.

The official launch of this endeavor unfolded in Paris from October 6 to 8, 2023, with a dazzling event that highlighted talents from the realms of animation, video games, and cinema. A significant Nigerian delegation was in attendance.

Since June 2023, the French Embassy in Nigeria has operated a €1.2 million fund to bolster entrepreneurs in the Nigerian cultural and creative industries, spanning design, fashion, video games, audiovisuals, and dance. Notably, the “Lagos x Paris Fashion And Design Accelerator” is a proud beneficiary of this grant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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