We are in the business of fashion & textiles. We are the UK voice and meeting place for suppliers of fashion & textiles providing: practical support, export advice, information exchange and a voice - to government - to retailers.
Nigel Lugg is Group Chairman of the Prominent Europe and Quantum businesses - both specialise in clothing supply. Prominent serves a broad client base offering men's shirts and suits, womenswear and casualwear to retailers across Europe; it has offices in Barcelona, Paris and Milan as well as London and Nottingham . It also owns the Chester Barrie brand and holds the menswear license for Richard James Mayfair. Quantum has a significant business manufacturing shirts, lingerie, hosiery and intimates for Marks and Spencer.
Originally a buyer at Liberty and then House of Fraser, Nigel moved onto the supply side of the industry in the mid-80s when he became European CEO of Warnaco. Then in 1992 he became a founding partner of Prominent Europe, setting up the business in conjunction with the Itochu Corporation.
Nigel became CEO in 2002; at the same time as Itochu took full control of the company. He has overseen the company's development from shirt specialist to the broader role it has now.
He also led Prominent into the branded market, buying Chester Barrie in 1997. From one store on Savile Row the brand has now grown to 13 shop-in-shops in the UK and Italy and has a healthy wholesale business. The Richard James Mayfair licence began at the start of 2012 and already there are seven shop-in-shops in the UK and France.
In July 2012 Nigel acquired the Quantum Clothing Group for the Itochu Corporation. Quantum is one of the largest apparel suppliers to Marks and Spencer, supplying ladies' lingerie and intimates, together with men's formal wear. Quantum has its own manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka, Cambodia and India and employs 8400 personnel.
Ian MacleanDeputy Chairman
Having grown up with the John Smedley brand as an 8th generation family shareholder, Ian chose to begin his career within finance working for 3i plc, the UK’s largest private equity provider. Following this, Ian began a 14 year advancement through niche multi-channel retailer Orvis, leading areas across buying and sales for both the US and UK. The brand saw rapid growth during the period, expanding from 4 to 27 shops, and Ian ultimately took charge of sales and marketing within the UK.
Moving into the family brand, Ian began his role at John Smedley as a Non-Executive Director in 2000, progressing to Chairman in 2008, and Managing Director in 2010. Under Ian’s leadership the brand has consistently moved forward, not only developing its design aesthetic to attract new consumers, but also strengthening its core values as a contemporary luxury brand. Ian has led the company to increasingly profitable growth in the last few years.
Stewart joined Allied Textiles Ltd. as Chief Executive in September 2007 from Chisty Home Textiles, where he was the Director responsible for Sales & Marketing. Previously, he had performed various international roles in Courtaulds Textiles plc, including Regional Sales & Marketing Director of the Asia Pacific fabric business, based in Hong Kong.
Stewart gained his law degree at the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, before qualifying as a Chartered Management Accountant.
Adam MansellCEO & Company Secretary
Having previously worked in the accountancy and publishing sectors, Adam Mansell joined the textile and clothing industry 20 years ago. Beginning as an Executive at the British Clothing Industry Association, he then went on to work for a number of trade bodies including the British Interior Textile Association, Silk Association of Great Britain, Home Laundering Consultative Council and British Apparel & Textile Confederation. Having represented all aspects of the fashion and textile supply chain, Adam has links to every part of the industry from design, fabric and component suppliers, wholesalers, brands, manufacturers and retail.
Before becoming CEO of UKFT, Adam was Director of Special Projects, with his focus being on increasing the membership offer, including overseeing the introduction of a new Retail Partner Programme, as well as introducing the UKFT Masterclasses and running an environmental programme, which has seen UK dyers and weavers significantly reduce their CO2 emissions.
Along with his work at UKFT, Adam is a Director of Wulff Consultancy; a bespoke consultancy for the fashion and textile industry and has recently been elected as President of Ginetex, the organisation that owns the trademarked care labelling symbols. As of January 2016 Adam will be a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters.
Achilleas ConstantinouBoard Member
Achilleas is Chairman & Managing Director of Ariella Fashions Limited.
In 1969 he was admitted as an Honorable Member of Grays Inn and gained admission to Kings College, London University, graduating in 1971 with an LLB Honours Bachelor of Laws Degree. He joined his late brother, Aristos, who started trading in the fashion business in Carnaby Street in 1966 and in 1971 they founded Ariella Fashions Limited.
He has steered Ariella to winning numerous Awards and Accolades including two 'Woman' fashion awards in 1985, a visit from HRH The Princess Royal in 1992 to its Wood Green headquarters in celebration of its 25th Anniversary, the British Export Award 1996 for outstanding export achievements, UK Fashion Export Award 2008, UKFT Export Award 2010 in the High Octane and Glamour Category and the HSBC Business Thinking 2010 Competition for the London Region.
In May 1998, he was appointed to the Board of Management of the British Knitting and Clothing Export Council and also founded the British Fashion Design Protection Association (FDPA) in 1974 whose aims and objectives are to protect the interests of creative and original designers and seek appropriate changes in the Copyright Laws to this end. In 2007 he was appointed to the Design Board of Skillfast UK and to the Graduate Fashion Week Industry and Media Board. In 2009 he was invited onto the inaugural Board of UKFT.
He has also appeared on numerous television and radio programmes, including ITV, BBC and CNN discussing fashion topics, and he has attended numerous Fashion Industry celebrations under Government hospitality at Lancaster House, 10 Downing Street and Buckingham Palace.
David BreckenridgeBoard Member
With more than 40 years experience in the textiles industry, David has a wealth of experience in manufacturing, international marketing and business development.
Having previously occupied senior positions within the Scottish industry David was Managing Director at Moorbrook Textiles from 2003 to 2010. As such he was responsible for the Alex Begg cashmere operation in Ayr together with the Robert Noble apparel fabric business and the Replin industrial fabrics business, both based in Peebles.
Since leaving Moorbrook Textiles in late 2010, David was, for a time, Project Director of the Scottish Academy of Fashion which brought together some of Scotland’s leading higher education institutions in order to provide an academic research base for the industry. In addition, he provided a business mentoring service as part of the Scottish Textiles Academic Group’s Skills in Textiles programme which sought to nurture and encourage emerging businesses in the sector.
David is currently Chief Executive of the Scottish Textile & Leather Association which represents around 130 of Scotland’s leading fashion, textile and leather companies. He is also Vice-Chair of Creative Skillset’s Fashion & Textiles Council which is the industry’s Sector Skills Council responsible for developing the skills base in all areas of the industry and represents the Scottish industry on the Federated Members Board of the UK Fashion & Textiles Association.
Simon CarterBoard Member
The Simon Carter story began in 1985, Simon was studying and spent his free time pursuing his interest in vintage clothing and accessories in the stylish shops of Chelsea. His first business move came in the shape of a men’s pewter brooch which he had manufacturedand sold successfully to one of Chelsea’s most innovative jewellery stores. However, the company really found its niche when Simon developed the business to include cufflinks and watches, adding new product lines as the client list expanded.
The company continued to grow through the nineties adding in new products such as luggage and ties. Around this time Simon was crowned by the press as the ‘King of Cufflinks’ for his iconic designs such as the Aspirin cufflink. Early 2002 saw Simon Carter significantly expand the product offer to include a menswear line. PB Tailoring were granted the exclusive, worldwide rights to produce suits and shirts under the Simon Carter brand. From the start, the range proved popular with both buyers and customers alike and the collection is now stocked in leading department stores around the world.
Today, the accessories include watches, cufflinks, ties, luggage, small leather goods and men’s jewellery. The collections are carried in some of the most exclusive department stores and independent retailers in 35 countries around the world including Selfridges, Fortnum and Mason, Harvey Nichols, House of Fraser, John Lewis, Takashimaya, Bloomingdales and David Jones, as well as online.
Belinda Dickson OBEBoard Member
Belinda gained a Bachelor of Education degree and began her career as a physical education teacher before going into marketing with a telecommunications company. It was whilst working in the Scottish Borders that she developed an interest in the cashmere knitwear industry, which at that time was still steeped in classic design and traditional production methods. Belinda recognised the potential of cashmere as a fashionable luxury item and, encoraged by a manufacturer Belinda designed her first collection.
Before starting her own label, Belinda worked with internationally famous labels including Nina Ricci, Michael Kors and Dior. Belinda Robertson Ltd. was established in 1992 and came to be defined by modern, flattering cashmere garments.
Over the years her efforts have been rewarded by a number of accolades including Scottish Business Woman of the Year (1999), Entrepreneur of the Year (2000), OBE for services to the textile industry (December 2001) and Designer of the Year (Scottish Style Awards 2002).
Bill Macbeth OBEBoard Member
Bill is the Managing Director of the Textile Centre of Excellence, a company that represents over 70 textile manufacturing businesses. Bill has a detailed knowledge of UK and EU Funding policies/programmes.
Between 1990 and 2000, Bill was the Deputy CEO of the Calderdale and Kirklees Training and Enterprise Council, the first 'TEC' in the UK. Bill established the TEC's innovation and business support services, marketing and European operations, developing and securing funding for a range of innovative partnerships and projects in business growth and new technology fields.
From 2000 to 2003, Bill held the office of President of the European Regional Information Society Association (ERIS@), a company based in Brussels. ERIS@ works closely with the European Commission to support the take-up and implementation of new technology across education, innovation and business. Bill is now a patron of ERIS@ and remains very active in European Employment, Education and Technology policy areas.
In 2010, Bill was invited to act as the UK's national expert for the creation of the EU's first Sector Skills Council (to support the Fashion, Textile and Leather sector), due to be launched in Brussels in December 2011.
Martin StrzeleckiBoard Member
Martin started his career in Brand Consultancy with Bulmers Cider and Holt Lloyd International. He also worked with Levi Strauss as an Inventory & Raw Material Planning Manager for its Northern European Division.
Martin has worked with Henri-Lloyd Limited from 1985 to the present. He has served as Operations Director, Joint Managing Director and is currently Joint Chief Executive. With his brother Paul, he has directed and converted the company from a pure manufacturing export business to a multi-faceted brand design service organisation trading under the Henri-Lloyd brand name. This includes manufacturing, warehouse, retail, brand and service facilities throughout the UK, Europe and North America.
His current and former Directorships include UKFT, BCIA, Henri-Lloyd International Limited, Henri-Lloyd Limited, Henri-Lloyd Polska SP zoo, Henry- Lloyd North America, XeBusiness (non-executive Director) and Seastyle. He graduated from Warwick University with a Msc Management & Business studies and from Loughborough University of Technology with a BSc Economics with Econometrics.
Kate HillsBoard Member
Kate Hills is founder and managing director of Make it British. Twenty years of working as a designer and buyer for brands such as Burberry and M&S and multiple product sourcing trips overseas prompted Kate to set up the Make it British website to help promote UK manufacturing and British-made brands. Now in its fifth year, the website has gone from strength to strength, and Kate has appeared regularly on television and radio espousing her firm belief that manufacturing in the UK is thriving, cost-effective and sustainable.
To this end she launched Make it British - Meet the Manufacturer in 2014, a trade show and conference for the UK fashion and textiles industry. The yearly event brings together the best of British manufacturers with buyers and designers looking to have their products made in Britain. The inaugural event attracted nearly 3000 visitors and doubled in size for its second show in 2015.