Vive le runner-up!
For its 2022 edition, French fashion competition ANDAM has added a Special Prize worth 100,000 euros alongside its Grand Prize of 300,000 euros, reflecting the generosity of new and established sponsors — and recognizing the wealth of high-caliber talents the awards have been attracting recently.
In addition, Bruno Pavlovsky, president of Chanel fashion and president of Chanel SAS, who was mentor of the 2015 ANDAM awards, will offer one-year mentorships to the big winner and the runner-up, coaching both on the creative and strategic dimensions of their fledgling businesses.
“More than ever, young creativity is important, and the latest edition proved that the question is not having to find talents — there is a wealth of them — but how to equip and help these talents in their entrepreneurial adventures,” he said.
Unveiling details of its latest edition exclusively to WWD, ANDAM’s executive director Nathalie Dufour also touted the richness of talent recent editions have attracted, and noted that the new, special prize could provide a leg-up to a budding designer with a smaller business footprint, as the jury pays close attention to revenue figures.
She also trumpeted the arrival of two digital powerhouses as sponsors — Instagram and Mytheresa.com — offering this year’s winners the chance to tap into a digital-savvy braintrust to hone their communication and distribution strategies.
Applications are now open at andam.fr until March 31, with the finalists to be revealed at the end of May and the prize ceremony scheduled for June 30. The jury is to be unveiled in February.
Bianca Saunders beat out the other six finalists — GmbH, Wales Bonner, Area, Rokh, Ludovic de Saint-Sernin and Casablanca — to scoop the 2021 prize. The British men’s wear designer is set to parade her latest collection on Jan. 19 during men’s fashion week in Paris, marking her debut on the French runway.
High-profile international fashion competitions have been enriching their payouts and multiplying their trophies in recent years, with the LVMH Prize handing out special, runner-up prizes to the likes of Hood by Air’s Shayne Oliver, Simon Porte Jacquemus and others. It was renamed the Karl Lagerfeld Prize in 2019 in tribute to the legendary German designer, who died that year.
In an interview, Dufour said ANDAM will now pay out a total of 600,000 euros to budding talents, the highest endowment since the prize was established in 1989. ANDAM, the French acronym for National Association of the Development of the Fashion Arts, bumped up the value of the Grand Prize to 300,000 euros last year. Previously, it was 250,000 euros.
The level of support has vastly increased because of the arrival of large corporate sponsors, which now include Balenciaga, Chanel, Chloé, Fondation Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent, Galeries Lafayette, Google France, Hermès, Kering, Lacoste, Longchamp, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, L’Oréal Paris, OTB, Premiere Classe, Saint Laurent, Swarovski and Tomorrow.
The French Ministry of Culture and the DEFI, a body that promotes the development of the French fashion industry, are also key historic public partners of ANDAM.