IC tomorrow, a Technology Strategy Board programme, has launched a £120,000 awards pot for new digital marketing ideas in the fashion industry.
Devised in collaboration with the British Fashion Council (BFC) and the Tech City Investment Organisation (TCIO), the Digital Innovation Contest - Fashion provides funding for businesses to develop products and services in partnership with established names in the sector.
Challenge partners include the London College of Fashion (who recently put on an exhibition of 3D printed fashions), augmented reality business Holition – the creators of the Shoreditch-based pop-up mall Boxpark – and fashion and celebrity magazine Grazia.
Launching the awards, IC tomorrow's programme manager Matt Sansam said, "The fashion and digital sectors are among the most vibrant and innovative markets in the UK. Yet they operate pretty independently of each other. At IC tomorrow we think greater involvement could bring benefits to both which is why we are launching this now.
"The fashion industry will be able to make inroads in the online arena while digital firms will gain from exposure to a range of fashion industry partners, being able to test new applications, products and services with major industry players."
Splitting the pot
Four awards of £30,000 are being offered by the programme which is open to all companies and developers, not just those currently involved in the fashion industry.
Winners will be able to trial their prototypes with an individual challenge partner over a minimum three-month period. All applications must include some element that is "novel and inventive". Successful applicants will retain their intellectual property.
All entries have to be submitted online by noon on Wednesday 12 June. The final will be held in London on Wednesday 10 July.
IC tomorrow will be holding a briefing event and webinar with the challenge partners on Thursday 23 May in London during the Digital Shoreditch festival.