Scottish fashion designer Jonathan Saunders was given the 2012 Designer Fashion Fund award by the British Fashion Council (BFC) tailored to assist him develop his business for the next twelve months. Apart from the bespoke mentoring program, Saunders will also receive £200,000 cash prize which will help him achieve his business goals.
Now in its third year, the Designer Fashion Fund award was established to further enhance the reputation of rising designers in the British fashion industry.
Around nine designers were shortlisted by a panel of representatives of fund sponsors for the event. The shortlisted candidates were then asked to present their collections along with their future plans to the judging panel of Fund sponsor representatives and industry experts chaired by Alexandra Shulman, editor of British Vogue.
"The BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund is aimed to assist our very exceptional British designers who during the application process show that they have the potential and business acumen to take the development of their brand to the next step and make the transition to progress their business into a commercial global fashion brand. The panel felt that this really is Jonathan's moment and he truly deserves to be the recipient of the fund prize," said Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council.
Saunders is known for his high-end couture collections and has created designs for celebrities like Madonna, Michelle Obama and Kylie Minogue in the past. Graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in the year 1999, Saunders was named Scottish Fashion Designer of the Year at the Scottish Style Awards in 2005 and British Designer of the Year at the Elle Style Awards in 2008.
His collections had been featured almost regularly at the London Fashion Week until 2008 when he decided to take his collections to New York Fashion Week in a move he described as "a natural progression".
However, later in 2010, he returned to the British fashion arena and participated in the London Fashion Council.
"I'm so happy about winning the fund. The last 12 months have been an exciting time for me and my team and I'm very proud of all their hard work. We have many exciting plans for the near future and this along with the support network provided by the BFC will enable us to achieve our goals," said Saunders after being given the Designer Fund Award.