The designers have been chosen by the fund’s judging committee which includes British Vogue’s editor in chief Alexandra Shulman, designer Victoria Beckham, Browns founder Joan Burstein and British Fashion Council ambassador Samantha Cameron.
“This is an inspiring shortlist because of its diversity. It’s a great representation of the spread of British fashion designers and all the contenders have huge strengths to their creative visions,” said Schulman, who is also the chair of the fund committee.
The shortlisted designers have to present key looks from their spring collection to the judging panel, as well as a business plan that maps out how their brand aims to expand internationally.
“We’re not only looking for creative ideas but for someone that really understands the fashion business,” said Caroline Rush.
The process will be documented in a video series which will be published on theBritish Vogue Web site, as well as theBritish Fashion Council’s channel on YouTube.
Now in its seventh year, the fund is sponsored by Vogue, Burberry, Topshop, Harrods and Paul Smith.
Previous winners have included Mary Katrantzou, Peter Pilotto, Erdem, Nicholas Kirkwood and Christopher Kane.
This year’s winning designer — to be announced on March 22 — will receive a 200 pound or $285 grant, as well as a mentoring program over a 12-month period, providing the infrastructure necessary to take their business to the next stage.