Online marketplace eBay UK has partnered with the British Fashion Council (BFC) to bring its Circular Fashion Fund to life for a second successive year.
Up to six £25,000 grants will be offered to small businesses, with the funding focused on companies bringing new technology and services to the circular economy. Specifically, eBay and the fashion council are looking to reward innovation around customer experience, circular inventory, and services, and social commerce.
Environmental charity, Hubbub, is playing an advisory role in the process.
According to eBay’s global general manager of fashion, Kirsty Keoghan, the UK fashion industry “is at the forefront of innovation driving to make circularity the future of fashion”.
She added: “At eBay, we’ve seen first-hand that startups and small businesses are a significant driving force behind this ambition for change.
“Following the hugely successful first year of the fund, we’re committed to identifying and scaling more UK businesses to help make the change we all want to see.”
Applications are open until Friday 20 October 2023, with interested parties able to register on the eBay website. Judges will be looking for and guided by examples of innovation, circularity, scalability, and sustainability, and a shortlist of ten businesses will be invited to pitch to a panel of fashion and sustainability industry experts and organisations.
Finalists will receive the financial support, as well as a six-week mentoring programme, multiple industry networking opportunities, and other forums to get the message about their product or service out to a wide audience.
Caroline Rush, CEO at the BFC, commented: “We aim to support and assist businesses in preparing for positive change by embracing innovation, which is fundamental to our mission.
“We firmly believe that everyone has a role to play in building a brighter future for the fashion industry and aiding the growth of companies that are accelerating the circular economy in fashion is key to this. We look forward to continuing to champion the remarkable advances which are being made in the industry.”
[Image credit: eBay]