ASOS.com LEADS FASHION INDUSTRY SKILLS SUPPORT
London, 6th April, 2011 ASOS.com – the UK’s leading independent online fashion and beauty retailer – in partnership with Fashion Enter, is proud to announce a series of initiatives dedicated to supporting the British fashion industry and the aspirations of its young employees.
Amid recent reports* of 938,000 (15.6%) of 16 – 24-year-olds falling into the NEET category (Not in Education, Employment or Training), ASOS has made a commitment to support the UK retention of declining industry skills, focusing on young people who wish to work in fashion.
ASOS has also pledged to bolster the downturn in production and manufacture of clothing in the UK, with industry organisation and training provider Fashion Enter, enabling a fashion factory in Haringey, North London, to open last year.
ASOS is the only UK retailer to have committed to the first ever National Apprenticeship in Fashion and Textiles Apparel, offering employment and training two days per week within the technical development team at the ASOS head office in north London, England, and a workshop course one day per week. A further day per week is spent at the Haringey factory managed by Fashion Enter. The apprenticeship is endorsed by Skill Set, the Sector Skills Council for Creative Media which comprises fashion and textiles amongst other industries supported by the body.
Factory Fashion Enter, which opened in September 2010, funded by ASOS, will supply the industry with skilled, trained workers in pattern-cutting, toiling, first-fit sampling and mass production. Square footage at the factory (which currently produces 5,000 garments per week for the ASOS Black label), is expected to double in size by the end of 2011, furthering its capacity for fast-track production. Ed Vaizrey, Minister for Communication, Culture and the Creative Industries, will visit the site in June.
Nick Robertson, founder and CEO of ASOS, said: “As a globally successful British business with fashion and young people at its centre, it is vitally important – now more than ever, when we are facing economic challenges – for ASOS to support our industry, preserve the skills that have made it what it is and develop career opportunities for those who will take it into the future.”
Established in June 2000 and admitted to AIM in October 2001, ASOS.com is the UK’s largest independent online fashion and beauty retailer, offering over 40,000 branded and own label product lines across womenswear – including dresses, shoes, jewellery and beauty – and menswear, including jeans, shoes and shirts. 1,500 – 2,000 new product lines are being introduced each week. ASOS Marketplace, launched in 2010, is a democratic retail platform that facilitates the sale and purchase of product between fashion lovers. Aimed primarily at fashion forward 16 – 34 year olds, ASOS attracts over 11 million unique visitors a month and as of 31st December 2010 had 4.8 million registered users and 1.9 million active customers.