In May 2022, the global shipping and delivery platform, Topship Africa announced the Topship Fashion and Design Grant to show its commitment to African SMEs & SMBs, specifically fashion designers and entrepreneurs. In partnership with leading e-commerce voices and facilitators, the grant program hoped to award these businesses $3500 in scale-up capital, global visibility partnerships, and mentorship opportunities.
After reviewing thousands of applications, the judges consisting of leading voices in the fashion industry chose ten finalists from multiple sub-sectors within the fashion industry. On Tuesday, July 12, 2022, these top 10 finalists were treated to an intimate dinner with the grant judges and partners to round up the initiative and award the top 3 winners.
Speaking at the event, founder and CEO of Topship Africa, Moses Enenwali commended the finalists on their tenacity, drive, and creativity which has helped them to differentiate themselves in a crowded market. He congratulated these entrepreneurs for being active players in making Nigeria a global powerhouse for e-commerce, fashion, and creativity.
The winner announcement followed the remark, which went as follows:
Grand Prize Winner ($2,500): Seta the Label (by Denrele Agoro)
First runner-up ($1,000): The 1964 Brand (by Kunmi Oni), 2nd runner-up (3 months of Free shipping): 21 Wool Street (by Elizabeth Adedeji), and Meji Meji (by Tolulope Oye)
According to Denrele Agoro, CEO of Seta The Label & grand prize winner, Seta The Label wants to satisfy the modern woman by creating simple and timeless styles that work for every woman’s wardrobe. With the $2,500 cash injection, she plans to invest in her offshoot brand, Seta Prints.
Seta Prints is a fabric printing company catering to local fashion businesses looking to print original patterns on a small scale. Seta Prints alleviates the need for growing fashion brands in Nigeria to import fabrics from Turkey, and China, and enables these brands to create unique prints and build differentiated brands.
Beyond the Top 3 spots, Topship also awarded the other finalists — Pith Africa, Ankarabae by Presh Talker, Henri Uduku, Bfits, 1964, Green & Co, and Spice of Lagos Adire — with free membership into The Assembly (a professional development and networking initiative for African creatives), personalised notes and feedback from the judges, as well as discounted shipping rates.
Partners that supported and continue to support this program are The Assembly, Ozinna.com, Jendaya, and Bella Naija Style.
See other photos from the event below