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The Folklore Connect Announces New Global Partnership with RAISEfashion to Empower Black-owned Brands

January 25th, 2023 [New York, NY] -- The Folklore Connect, the premier online wholesale marketplace that enables retailers to discover and shop diverse and sustainable brands in global markets, today is announcing a new partnership with RAISEfashion, the non-profit advisory network of fashion industry leaders whose mission is to advance the equity of BIPOC-owned brands. 

In an effort to support Black-owned brands, The Folklore Connect will welcome 17 brands from the RAISEfashion network onto its platform for a six-month free membership and continue to onboard a new cohort of brands on a rolling basis every six months. In turn, RAISEfashion will offer mentorship opportunities for 10 brands from The Folklore Connect and will ultimately select two for a RAISEfashion fellowship which includes ongoing mentorship as well as financial grants. The Folklore brands will have access to a global network of advisors spanning five continents, including North America, Africa, United Kingdom, Europe, and Oceania.

There is a wide range of expertise within the network, including e-commerce, finance, merchandising, operations and logistics, production, sales, business development, branding, marketing, public relations, influencer outreach, and creative content strategies.

“With this new partnership, RAISEfashion is expanding its global efforts to support and mentor brands in emerging markets from Africa, South America,, Caribbean, and BIPOC communities worldwide. Folklore has created a wholesale platform that strengthens the brand experience with retailers while also dismantling the barriers BIPOC designers face in scaling a business, says Felita Harris, Founding Member and Executive Director of RAISEfashion. “The partnership with The Folklore Connect demonstrates our ongoing commitment to providing resources that specifically support the operational ecosystems of BIPOC brands.

To kick off the partnership The Folklore Connect and RAISEfashion will host “The Folklore Connect x RAISEfashion NYFW Showroom” powered by Shopify from February 9th-12th at 131 Greene St, the Shopify New York space in SoHo. The three-story space will showcase the Autumn/Winter 2023 collections of 15 Black-owned apparel and accessories brands originating from New York, London, Nigeria, and Ghana. Retailers will have the opportunity to book private appointments to meet with brands February 9-10th or register for walk-in showings February 11-12. 

“The Folklore Connect is thrilled to partner with RAISEfashion and Shopify this New York Fashion Week to amplify Black-owned brands and help retailers gain access to them in unprecedented ways,” says Amira Rasool, Founder & CEO of The Folklore Group. “Through this unique partnership, we’re able to create even more opportunities for retailers, buyers and media to experience and have access to these incredible brands in a way they never have before.”

Registration is required for attendance for retailers, as well as select stylists, editors, and media appointments. To request access to the showroom, please visit thefolklore.com.

The official showroom will kick off with a private cocktail party the evening of February 9th featuring live DJ, music, food, drinks, and an assortment of designers, creatives, press, and industry professionals. The Folklore Connect x RAISEfashion NYFW showroom is the first of many initiatives that TFC and RF will be undertaking in the near future.

 

Brands featured at The Folklore Connect x RAISEfashion NYFW Showroom

April and Alex, Ashya, Bloke, Bohten, Christie Brown, Dur DouxOnalaja, Oríré, Shekudo, Third Crown, TJWHO, V.Bellan, and VAVVOUNE.


RAISEfashion Brands joining The Folklore Connect

Alosh London, Avid Swim, Black Paper StreetWear, BruceGlen, Coradorables,LLC, DazeInBlue, DUR DOUX, Elexiay, Evelyn Elizabeth , Florian London, HOUSE OF NKOLI, I S Cal Apparel, LLC, KAHINDO, Keama.official, Keeyahri, LarAllan, M. Code Luxury LLC, Menzie by Design, Michael Wright Collection, Michel Men, MIMINE AG, Monzlapur, Nalebe, Nomads Swimwear, òL | Outside Lines, Rags official, Simone The Label, Tiannia Barnes, Tracy Nicole, UGLYDUKLYN, U Slept on me / USOM, WhollyGloss 


The Folklore Connect Brands joining RAISEfashion

Shekudo, Bloke, The Underargument, Abiola Olusola, Onalaja, Kadiju, Orire, Duaba Serwa, V.Bellan, Pamoja



About The Folklore Connect

The Folklore Connect is an online wholesale marketplace, operated by The Folklore Group, that provides software for diverse brands in global markets to manage and scale their wholesale business and retailers with a marketplace to discover and shop these brands.


Brands on The Folklore Connect are based in emerging markets (Africa, South America, Asia, Caribbean, etc.) or founded by someone of a diverse racial background (person of color or POC). These diverse backgrounds include but are not limited to Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, and Pacific Islander. A large portion of brands also take a sustainable or ethical approach to developing their products and businesses. The platform was created to provide opportunities to brands that have historically been geographically or racially marginalized from connecting with global retailers.


The Folklore Connect’s technology is creating solutions to unique problems brands in emerging markets face. In many markets, The Folklore Connect is the first and only B2B wholesale platform dedicated to serving that region. On the platform, brands can upload and manage their product catalog, create a digital showroom, download pre-formatted line sheets, accept and manage orders digitally and receive payment to 100+ countries. Retailers can browse the marketplace using deep filtering technology, request appointments, message and video chat with brands, easily submit orders, and pay with all major cards. For more information, visit thefolklore.com


The Folklore Connect was launched in 2022 by The Folklore Group Founder and CEO, Amira Rasool. Rasool is a former fashion editor and writer that has contributed to Vogue, Glamour, i-D, and TIME. Prior to The Folklore Connect, The Folklore operated for four years as a D2C multi-brand e-commerce platform for customers to discover and shop fashion and lifestyle brands from Africa and diaspora.


About RAISEfashion


RAISEfashion is a 501(c)(3) non-profit advisory network of fashion industry leaders

providing pro bono business consulting to BIPOC-owned brands. Our mission is to advance the equity of BIPOC talent through mentorship, resources, and access. We support fashion brands with individualized plans to create and build business infrastructure, and we discover the leaders of the future through our student internship program. Currently, our volunteer-run network consists of 300+ vetted industry experts with years of experience across all sectors of the market including branding, marketing and communications, digital strategy, merchandising, sales, and business development. Advisors have backgrounds ranging from high luxury to contemporary and mass markets, across categories of men’s and women’s apparel, accessories and leather goods, jewelry, and home goods. 


For more information, visit https://raisefashionnow.org | @raisefashionnow  

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