Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today signaled his commitment to New York City’s fashion industry with a far-reaching effort to uphold New York’s status as a fashion capital. With Robert K. Steel, the deputy mayor for economic development, and Seth W. Pinsky, the president of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the mayor announced a six-part initiative to ensure the industry’s growth in the next decade.
Outlined at the Women’s Wear Daily C.E.O. Summit at the Plaza Hotel, the mayor’s initiatives are intended to reinforce the city’s position as a magnet for emerging designers and to nurture the next wave of design, management and retail professionals.
“The creativity and expertise of our talented workforce present us with competitive advantages we want to capitalize on,” Mr. Bloomberg said. The program was conceived, he said, to enable a new generation of fashion entrepreneurs to “turn their ideas into reality.”
The first of these initiatives, the NYC Fashion Fund, will provide emerging designers with capital for production and with manufacturing contacts.
Other proposals, like Project Pop-up, a competition to come up with new store concepts; New York City Fashion Fellows, which will single out 30 rising stars in fashion management; and Designer as Entrepreneur, which will teach emerging designers to develop business plans and management skills. The point of these proposals is to give fashion students and professionals mentoring services, networking opportunities and seminars and workshops in fields like marketing, retailing and technology.