Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC) – a division of Qatar Development Bank (QDB) – concluded its inaugural Lean Fashion Program during a special Demo Day which was held in Milan, Italy on 15 November.
QBIC’s Lean Fashion Program, which was launched earlier this year, aims to cater to specialized entrepreneurs and designers looking to enter the Qatari fashion industry. QBIC’s Lean Fashion Program equips aspiring designers and entrepreneurs with a holistic understanding of the fashion industry, enabling them to actualize their ideas into Qatar’s next iconic fashion brand. It is designed and delivered in collaboration with the Fashion Technology Accelerator Milan (FTA), an international hub that fosters digital and technological innovation in the fashion industry.
Eight promising startups emerged out of a group of over 25 entrepreneurs and aspiring designers that entered the first wave of the program in August of this year. Upon qualifying for the acceleration phase in Milan, the fashion capital of the world, the eight participants benefitted from exclusive networking opportunities with international industry experts, suppliers, distributors and potential Milan-based partners.
Noting the positive response to the program, Hamad Al-Qahtani, General Manager at QBIC, said: “With the launch of the Lean Fashion Program, we have provided incubation opportunities for Qatar’s growing pool of aspiring entrepreneurs and startups looking to break into the fashion ecosystem. I want to extend a special thank you to the contending entrepreneurs that have successfully stepped up to the rigorous selection criteria and proven their spirit of entrepreneurial innovation to our panel of judges.”
“Specially designed to meet the demands of a fluid global market, QBIC’s new programs offer local entrepreneurs a uniquely adaptive toolkit to meet modern industry requirements. Together with our valuable partners at FTA, we aim to contribute to the consistent development of Qatari entrepreneurism and establish a strong foothold in the fashion industry. As such, we look forward to witnessing their creative vision come to life and inspire the next generation of Qatari designers to turn bold creative ideas into sustainable business practices,” he concluded.
Commenting on the benefits of the joint initiative, CEO of FTA, Ms. Giusy Cannone, said: “I believe this program was a very important step for Qatari designers to interact and develop relationships with key players from one of the most important fashion capitals, Milan. I’m sure they will bring back to Doha an abundance of inspiration and learnings to expand the growing fashion ecosystem in Qatar.”
The winning startups will receive access to smart funding, continuous coaching and workspaces to grow their businesses. In line with the national diversification agenda, QBIC’s specialized incubation programs drive innovative business implementation across a wide number of market segments in Qatar.