By Dorcas Omotayo
The creative industry in Nigeria is regarded a major contributor to Africa’s arts, culture and entertainment. The Nigerian music industry has been estimated to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13.4 per cent by 2021, estimated at about $73 million, according to the Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar.
As reported by Stear (An online news platform) in a report titled, “The State of the Nigerian Fashion Industry in 2019”, the global fashion industry is worth over $2.5 trillion, with Africa’s share estimated at less than 1% of that amount. The report also stated that the Sub Saharan Fashion Industry is worth $31 billion, with Nigeria accounting for 15% of that amount ($4.7 billion). The figures are lower compared to the fashion industry in other Sub Saharan country like South Africa, which has about 46% market share ($14.4 billion).
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), says that the “textile, apparel, and footwear” sector has averaged a growth of 17 per cent since 2010. This growth has been charged up by an increase in demand for and partly by unexpected initiatives that continue to propel the Nigerian fashion globally. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the fashion industry worth billions of naira, witnessed a decline in sales, patronage and fashion shows which would further intensify the impact on revenue in 2020.
According to Ventures Africa, “If there is any time to invest in the African fashion industry, it is now.” those who invest in the industry will be the biggest beneficiaries of them all. Euromonitor opined that, “the combined apparel and footwear market in sub-Saharan Africa is estimated to be worth billions.” It is therefore necessary for both the government and private sector to investment and leverage on several initiatives to aid growth of the industry.
As a key contributor to the economy and the creative industry, GTBank has continued in its vision of promoting enterprise, creating platforms and initiatives to enhance the growth of the fashion industry in Nigeria. With the 5th edition of the GTBank Fashion Weekend, the bank aims to promote enterprise within the fast-growing Nigerian Fashion Industry and build human capacity. The theme “The Future of Fashion Retail,” for the postponed 2020 GTBank Fashion Weekend. This year’s event would have been a fusion of online and physical experiences, including online master classes, a riveting online shopping experience with free delivery nationwide with a runway Show.
Speaking on the GTBank Fashion Weekend, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of GTBank, Segun Agbaje, noted that; “Fashion is more than just art or endeavour, it is a way of life, and as we make adjustments to how we live in these new realities, we are also reimagining how we create value for small businesses, the local fashion industry and our customers through the GTBank Fashion Weekend. This year, key parts of our fashion experience will go online, but the focus remains the same; to drive the growth of our fashion industry by promoting enterprise for small businesses in the sector.”
He added that, “at GTBank, we will continue to lend the full weight of our franchise to safeguarding lives and livelihoods not only by leading the fight to curtail the COVID-19 outbreak, but also creating and championing initiatives that help businesses and individuals thrive.”
Over the years, GTBank Fashion Weekend has become a platform for showcasing Africa’s Finest and promoting real commerce for small businesses in the fashion industry while being a home to an exciting lineup of fashion designers and enthusiasts from different parts of the world. With the event, the Bank has successfully brought together renowned fashion experts and personalities to interact with hundreds of thousands of young Africans passionate about fashion and entrepreneurship.
The event typically feature fashion-leaders and industry experts from around the world, while providing hundreds of indigenous small fashion businesses with the opportunity to expand their online presence, reach new markets, and position their businesses for sustainable growth.
The Runway Show will also keep its place at GTBank Fashion Weekend. Designed with current realities in mind, the Runway Show will feature a carefully curated ensemble of bold and enthralling fashion statements by Africa’s Finest Fashion Brands, while observing social distancing.
With the intent of growing the fashion industry, GTBank has persistently played a significant role as a foremost and forward thinking leader in the banking industry and is also going beyond the traditional understanding of Corporate Social Responsibility as corporate organisation by investing in key economic sectors through customer-centric fairs, exhibition and capacity building initiatives for small businesses.