Topshop introduces new wearable tech programme Top Pitch

Arcadia-owned British fashion retailer Topshop has teamed up with L Marks, the corporate innovation specialist, to launch a new innovation programme, Top Pitch.


Photo: Topshop

The aim of the programme is to find and develop start-up businesses to deliver technology-enabled fashion product to a global consumer. The retail giant wants to co-develop prototypes that move wearable technology further into the fashion arena. This could be around smart accessories or in the emerging apparel space.

Teams can now apply for the month-long programme, which will give them access to an extensive group of mentors from across the fashion and technology world, including Rachel Arthur, Journalist and Founder of Fashion & Mash; Maddy Evans, Fashion Director, Topshop and Bethany Koby, Co-Founder and CEO, Technology Will Save Us.

The winning team will give a presentation to Sir Philip Green, owner of Arcadia, and will have designed a product with utility, relevance and style for the Topshop customer.

Sheena Sauvaire, Global Marketing & Communications Director at Topshop, comments: “Topshop has long supported emerging talent in creative industries and this project serves to further this aim.  As a brand we champion new platforms of innovation and we see wearable technology as an exciting area of further exploration. The merge of style and function has yet to have been seen in a true consumer-ready sense and our aim is to discover new-to-market, highly desirable product at accessible prices for our fashion-savvy customer.”
 
L Marks Chairman, Stuart Marks, added: “Top Pitch is such a great opportunity for entrepreneurs working on a wearable technology product. When presenting to buyers, it is always better to know them really well. What better way is there to learn about Topshop than work in collaboration with them for four weeks, developing your brand and strategy as well as the direction your product will take. I’m excited to see who can make the most out of this opportunity!”

L Marks recently also worked with British high street retailer John Lewis on its JLAB 2016 accelerator programme, which supports retail startups and helps them drive fast-track growth.

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