LONDON, United Kingdom — The Business of Fashion is delighted to reveal the first group of speakers, hosts and participants at VOICES, BoF’s new annual gathering for big thinkers, in partnership with QIC Global Real Estate, taking place December 1-3 just outside London.
At this invitation-only event, chief executives of the world’s biggest luxury brands will rub shoulders with political figures and activists at the exclusive Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire, bringing together the trailblazers of the fashion industry and uniting them with the big thinkers, entrepreneurs and inspiring people who are shaping the wider world.
Bold visionaries and mysterious mavericks will introduce one-of-a-kind experiences to open our minds and inspire us in sessions covering topics as diverse as science, technology, health and wellness, youth culture and the future of retail. From Brexit to climate change, geo-political shocks to terrorism and deep underlying shifts in consumer behaviour, we are living in a period of unprecedented and radical change.
In order to thrive in such an environment, the fashion business must explore new frontiers and challenge received wisdom. We are delighted to introduce voices from beyond the fashion fold to enlighten our community:
Maajid Nawaz is a British-Pakistani author and the founding chairman of Quilliam, an international think tank focusing on integration, citizenship and identity, religious freedom, extremism and immigration.
Bob Roth, sometimes called the “meditation teacher to stars and CEOs,” is the executive director of the David Lynch Foundation, where he has helped to direct the introduction of transcendental meditation to more than 500,000 people in 35 countries.
Jason Wachob is founder and CEO of Mindbodygreen, an independent lifestyle media brand dedicated to the global wellness community. After a career on Wall Street left him feeling mentally overworked and physically unwell, Wachob channelled his frustrations into the successful business venture, which now garners 10 million monthly unique visitors.
Dr Nigma Talib is an innovative, licensed naturopathic doctor with an award-winning practice that has earned her a reputation as beauty guru to Sienna Miller, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Charlotte Tilbury.
June Sarpong is one of the most recognisable faces in British television. In her forthcoming book “Diversify” (May 2017), Sarpong explores inclusion and diversity in the context of growing social divisions.
Clement Kwan left the fashion industry to follow a lifelong passion by joining Privateer Holdings, where he is responsible for launching the official cannabis brand of Bob Marley as chief operating officer of Marley Natural.
Pressing and urgent issues facing the fashion industry will also be hotly debated on the VOICES stage, from race, gender and diversity and the role of women to responsible business, creative burnout and the very nature of the fashion system itself.
In an unprecedented gathering of the leaders of the fashion designer associations from Paris, Milan, New York and London, Pascal Morand of the Fédération Française de la Couture, Carlo Capasa of the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana, Steven Kolb of the Council for Fashion Designers of America and Caroline Rush of the British Fashion Council, will sit down for a frank discussion about the overheated fashion system.
Top fashion educators from around the world — Linda Loppa of Polimoda in Florence, Simon Collins the former dean of fashion at Parsons School of Design in New York and Frances Corner of the London College of Fashion — will discuss how we can prepare fashion students for a industry in rapid flux, while preserving and nurturing the creativity that lies at the very heart of what we do.
Ivan Bart — who has guided IMG Models to represent such success stories as Kate Moss, Carolyn Murphy, Gisele Bündchen, Joan Smalls, Kate Upton, Lily Donaldson and Tyra Banks — will lead a discussion on diversity in the modelling industry.
We will also reveal the results of the joint piece of in-depth research BoF is conducting with our exclusive knowledge partner, McKinsey & Company, to help understand all of these issues and how they impact and intersect with fashion.
VOICES will also be about personal connectivity and building relationships. Our convivial hosts Imran Amed, founder and chief executive of The Business of Fashion, and Tim Blanks, editor-at-large, along with Natalie Massenet, chairman of the British Fashion Council, Elizabeth Saltzman, contributing editor of Vanity Fair and Julie Gilhart, fashion consultant, as well as Stuart Miller of QIC Global Real Estate will host events over 48 hours brimming with activity, inspiration and knowledge.
Additional speakers, event hosts and participants will be announced over the coming weeks.
Already, more than 75 C-level executives, creative directors and entrepreneurs are confirmed to attend our special new gathering.