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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Fashion Angel Hosts Networking Talk on Agents and Distributors with GCU London

On Wednesday 27th May, we hosted one of our infamous networking talks, focusing on working with Agents and Distributors, as a path to increasing sales. The event was held in the heart of Spitalfields at the GCU London British School of Fashion campus, and was the first in a series of talks we will be collaborating on.

The event was a sell out with around 60 attendees, including our Fashion Angel Business Club members,  both new and established fashion industry SMEs and GCU students & alumni .

Chaired by Fashion Angel founder Alison Lewy, the evening explored how to go about finding agent/distributors, what needs to be considered if taking this route, and the legal obligations you should be aware of.

The guest panel consisted of Daniel Morris, MD of accessory brand Pauls’ Boutique, Stephen Sidkin, Partner at Fox Williams LLP who specialise in fashion agency law and Bridget Boakye, Fashion Industry Sales & Branding Consultant.

Daniel Morris offered his advice on how to find a sales agent  “ You have to do the hard work, visit trade shows, look at who represents complimentary brands. For international agents, the UKTI and local Chambers of Commerce can be helpful in providing  contacts.”

Steven Sidkin also told the audience the importance of have a formal agreement or letter of exchange in place "Agreements must comply with the Commercial Agency Regulation 1993 act and it’s vital that your requirements and terms & conditions are in place to avoid complicated litigation if things don’t go to plan, or you want to exit the relationship."

Bridget Boakye also offered her advice on working with agents  “It’s all about building a good relationships and managing expectations – some brands take on agents too early on, and are not ready to support producing larger orders.”

The talk could have gone on all night but there was plenty of opportunity to ask the panel questions and also a chance to network afterwards with the delegates as well as the guest speakers.

Fashion Angel founder Alison Lewy said “ the event exceeded our expectations and feedback from attendees has been fantastic. We were so pleased to see the GCU students network with our community of fashion SMEs, and look forward to collaborating with GCU London on the next talks”

Our next event is the popular Getting it Made workshop, focusing on sourcing and managing production. Tickets available on our events page.