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Lisa Folawiyo & Reni Folawiyo Join Business of Fashion’s 500 List | Caitlyn Jenner, Amal Clooney & More also Make the Cut

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Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015002

Lisa Folawiyo, Ayo Amusan, Omoyemi Akerele & Reni Folawiyo

What a great way to start the day!

Nigerian fashion designer, Lisa Folawiyo of her eponymous womenswear label; and the Chief-Executive Founder of lifestyle boutique, AlaraReni Folawiyo have joined the Business of Fashion 500 (BoF) List for 2015.

This exclusive list is made up of blue-chip businesses and creative upstarts that help shape the $1 trillion fashion industry. Based on hundreds of nominations received from current members on the BoF list, data analysis and months of research on the nominees, they searched the entire globe and came up with a list of 500 that have proven their creativity, investment and passion towards the global fashion industry.

Lisa & Reni Folawiyo join 2 other Nigerians – Fashion Consultant, Omoyemi Akerele & retail pioneers, Tayo & Ayo Amusan who joined the list in 2014 & 2013.

Lisa Folawiyo – Founder & Creative Director, Lisa Folawiyo
Lisa Folawiyo for BoF 500 List - BellaNaija - September 2015

BoF says of Lisa’s work in fashion – “She has a knack for elevating traditional African prints above the status quo, making them relevant for a global audience. She has showrooms in both Nigeria and New York and her collections are stocked in the UK, the US, South Africa and Nigeria itself.Read the rest of her profile here.

Reni Folawiyo – Chief Executive & Founder, Alara
Reni Folawiyo for BoF 500 List - BellaNaija - September 2015

Talking about Reni’s store, BoF says – “Meaning ‘wondrous performer’ in Yoruba, Alara is rapidly becoming a fashion destination for Nigerians and westerners alike. It offers a mix of fashion, art and design in a similar style to famous concept stores like Paris’ Colette, London’s Dover Street Market and Milan’s 10 Corso Como.

It stocks a range of western designers including Stella McCartney, Dries Van Noten, Marni and Valentino. Alongside this, Folawiyo looks to champion Nigerian design, stocking the work of Maki Oh, Lanre de Silva Ajayi and Tiffany Amber. Alara has the potential to be a beacon for other fashion retailers and a centre for gravity for global luxury brands already beginning to cluster around a nascent fashion district in Lagos.Read the rest of her profile here.

To celebrate the new list, BoF had an exclusive dinner with old and new members yesterday. Lisa posted fun photos of her with Reni, Omoyemi & Ayo Amusan. See some images below:

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015 Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015006

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015008

Lisa Folawiyo in one of her Autumn/Winter 2015 pieces

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015009

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015007 Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 20150010

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015001

Lisa with Edgardo of Aquazurra

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015003

Lisa with Miroslava Duma of Buro247

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015004

Lisa with Daria Shapovalova

Lisa Folawiyo at Business of Fashion Event - BellaNaija - September 2015005

A huge congratulations to these inspiring entrepreneurs! We look forward to seeing more creatives from Nigeria on this exclusive list.

***
Caitlyn Jenner for BoF 500 List - BellaNaija - September 2015

Another interesting member who joined the list is transgender activist and reality TV star, Caitlyn Jenner.

According to BoF – “While her online influence and new found status as one of the most admired figures in popular culture no doubt appeals to brands and designers from a marketing point of view, Jenner’s fairy tale transformation also fits with fashion’s central narrative — she is the perfect model to show how you can truly express your identity through clothes.

No doubt by the next New York Fashion Week, Caitlyn Jenner will be a front row regular.” See Caitlyn’s full BoF 500 profile HERE.

Others who made this year’s cut are: Lawyer & George Clooney‘s wife, Amal Clooney; designers Dean & Dan Caten of DSquared2 and more. See the full list here.

Photo Credit: @LisaFolawiyo (Instagram) | BoF.com

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of BellaNaija.com. Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at)bellanaija.com or style(at)bellanaija.com | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle

19 Comments

  1. jide

    September 22, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Caitlyn Jenner like how though? Has it even been a year since he started wearing heels and dresses? Smh

  2. Godwin

    September 22, 2015 at 11:35 am

    Yeah right,like we are all fools not to question the coincidence in having the two folawiyos on this list lollll.Who nominated them?Omoyemi Akirele? Nigerians just bastardises every damn thing. Next year Sindodo will get a friend to nominate her to get on this list,mark my words.

    Jokers!

    • Sunshine

      September 22, 2015 at 12:59 pm

      How does having 2 hardworking entrepreneurs recognised for their creativity become ‘bastardisation’? Who cares if Mickey Mouse nominated them? Are you even aware of how incoherent your statement of hate is???? If you must criticize, at least have a POINT!

    • Godwin

      September 22, 2015 at 5:03 pm

      Lisa????

    • jydo

      September 22, 2015 at 1:08 pm

      Are they related? Besides, their reasons for adding them to the list are very clearly stated. What parts do you disagree with? Are you in the business of fashion yourself?

    • Truth

      September 22, 2015 at 1:45 pm

      Bad belle is allowed. Enemy of progress.

  3. Dear Omoyemi!

    September 22, 2015 at 1:51 pm

    STOP IT!!!!!
    This is the definition of nepotism.

    This is the body of the text from the website:
    “Her line is currently stocked in Selfridges” – FALSE (PLEASE tell me what floor, or give me the url)
    “She has showrooms in both Nigeria and New York” – FALSE (New York? Do you mean a representative? As in one human being? That’s not a showroom)
    “Her collections are exclusively crafted from Ankara textiles” – FALSE (google textile designer, Banke Kuku)
    “..and her collections are stocked in the UK, the US, South Africa and Nigeria itself” – (again… where?? where???? google is not even capable of helping me with this one)

    # hmmmmohmygod #whyyoulying

    BellaNaija, post this one. I know you want to support Nigerian entrepreneurs but nepotism kills real hard work.

    • concerned

      September 22, 2015 at 6:02 pm

      Aunty!!! It dey pain you oh!! Why? You too work hard with your family members so they can put you guys on a list and we can hate. Until then….

  4. Amh

    September 22, 2015 at 2:52 pm

    @ Godwin and dear omoyemi. Try and achieve something in your field and be sucessful in your family not to talk of international standard. You need a massage for your bile and envy. Congrats

  5. Godwin

    September 22, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    The bane of this nation is that people aren`t very critical in their thinking.Our default mode is always to take things on it`s face value.Personally,I`m of the opinion that the achievement of one Nigeria should be seen as inspirational to others however that achievement has to be earned and not manufactured.

    The very moment you disagree with some people`s perspective on issues you automatically become a hater with axe to grind ..Couldn`t they have waited until next year to nominate another Folawiyo just to make this less glaring and so that folks won`t feel that Omoyemi,Lisa and co are calling them stupid?

    Omoyemi has never cared about fashion industry in Nigeria but what she can get out it and that to isn`t productive.With time and issues like this being portrayed in the public arena,the reall Omoyemi will be unravelled.

    Yeah,Yeah,call me whatever you wish but the fact still remains that something here stinks to high heaven.I don`t believe in coincidences; this was a simple and downright case of nepotism.Merit was the last thing anyone involved in this thought about..Lisa isn`t a bad designer at all however this has nothing about it that resembles merit.Omoyemi stop before you wreck yourself!

    • David

      September 22, 2015 at 11:26 pm

      Did you even bother to go to the Business of Fashion website and find out more on why they nominated them? Do you even know what BOF 500 is about? Omoyemi raised awareness sans govt funding with LFDW. She gives young designers who arent even experienced in tailoring a platform to be recognised via fashion focus. International fashion media has criticized her for it but shes trying to raise hope and grow the industry in whatever way SHE can. Join her and partner if you feel more can be done because its not easy. Lisa has an amazing track record so far from collaborations with L’Oreal to stocking (even if just once) at multiple outlets across the globe from Moda Operandi to Selfridges. U.S Vogue reviewed her SS15 linewhen she showed in NYC last year. Harpers Bazaar has featured her pieces IN PRINT for the past two years. This helped in creating her brand awareness in various fashion capitals. She’s the only Nigerian designer that consistently brings out collections year after year to a global audience. If you dont understand her Autumn Winter range, patronise her Spring/Summer collections that are available for NIGERIANS almost all year round. She and her team fucking worked hard to get that mention. Maki Oh is the closest Nigerian womenswear brand that caters for that global audience. If she wasnt global they wouldnt mention her. Nepotism you say? So? They are sisters in law. Ambitious ones at that. Reni has created a unique retail experience that obviously couldn’t go unnoticed. Her PR as well as the architect David Adjaye helped bring international attention. Her store tells a unique story. Her counterparts hang cloth on racks and say luxury concept when there’s no concept. She celebrates African art and design, NOT JUST NIGERIAN as we selfishly do, myself included. There pieces handcrafted by Mallams in Kano that retail for almost 100USD with a good chunk payed to the artisans. These are women focused on their goals and living their dreams and making sure they scream their country and continents name from the rooftop. Free them abeg.

    • britico

      September 24, 2015 at 8:30 am

      that is the most ignorant statement made – suggesting Omoyemi who started fashion week in Nigeria and helped raised awareness internationally to some of Nigerias most famous designers as well as provide opportunities for new designers to study in instituto marangoni et al totally discredits your whole post. Do your research! gosh these commenters – anonymitysins

  6. David

    September 22, 2015 at 11:31 pm

    d you even bother to go to the Business of Fashion website and find out more on why they nominated them? Do you even know what BOF 500 is about? Omoyemi raised awareness sans govt funding with LFDW. She gives young designers who arent even experienced in tailoring a platform to be recognised via fashion focus. International fashion media has criticized her for it but shes trying to raise hope and grow the industry in whatever way SHE can. Join her and partner if you feel more can be done because its not easy. Lisa has an amazing track record so far from collaborations with L’Oreal to stocking (even if just once) at multiple outlets across the globe from Moda Operandi to Selfridges. U.S Vogue reviewed her SS15 linewhen she showed in NYC last year. Harpers Bazaar has featured her pieces IN PRINT for the past two years. This helped in creating her brand awareness in various fashion capitals. She’s the only Nigerian designer that consistently brings out collections year after year to a global audience. If you dont understand her Autumn Winter range, patronise her Spring/Summer collections that are available for NIGERIANS almost all year round. She and her team fucking worked hard to get that mention. Maki Oh is the closest Nigerian womenswear brand that caters for that global audience. If she wasnt global they wouldnt mention her. Nepotism you say? So? They are sisters in law. Ambitious ones at that. Reni has created a unique retail experience that obviously couldn’t go unnoticed. Her PR as well as the architect David Adjaye helped bring international attention. Her store tells a unique story. Her counterparts hang cloth on racks and say luxury concept when there’s no concept. She celebrates African art and design, NOT JUST NIGERIAN as we selfishly do, myself included. There pieces handcrafted by Mallams in Kano that retail for almost 100USD with a good chunk payed to the artisans. These are women focused on their goals and living their dreams and making sure they scream their country and continents name from the rooftop. Free them abeg.

  7. Godwin

    September 23, 2015 at 4:59 am

    Essentially how much sponsorship do you think Omoyemi accessed from GTbank ?
    Do you think what has been achieved is on par with the huge funding received?
    How has the quality of tailoring of these designers improved?
    What is she doing about the nasty quality of tailoring?

    Does she understand what quality tailoring entails and does she preach it?

    With all funding she has received so far,why hasn`t she established a vocational centre where tailoring and other aspects of fashion could be thought to aspiring designer?

    How much of this funding does she keep for herself?

    Just be critical while answering the question above and perhaps you will see things from angle.

    In other countries the folks who take on the role of Omoyemi has taken already have jobs or businesses to fund their daily expenses but Omoyemi depends on the funding she receives so it is all about making money for her and not growing the industry.Natalie Massenet sold Net-a-porter for millions of pounds so you can understand she isnt at British council to make money for the fashion industry and propel it forward and not to make money off it..Mt Tilman who was there before Natalie even has a trust fund worth Millions of pounds from where young designers access grants that they aren`t expected to ever pay back.

    Quit taking thing at face value and analyse it critical and fairly.Omoyemi created awareness and then met a brick wall and can`t go further because this isn`t her field and it is all about her pocket from the onset anyway.

    With the sort of funding received we should have structures on ground now but instead we have thin air and hype..

  8. Godwin

    September 23, 2015 at 5:17 am

    Please dont get me wrong,the idea was a fantastic one but the execution is flawed.

    Secondly,we must rid ourselves of nepotism if we must advance further in this industry.

    Most of the young designer who showcase at LFDW are mostly well off kids anyway because that is the only way they can afford to churn out collections in Nigeria..Omoyemi should fight sponsorships to fund the collections of designers selected to showcase and that way poor aspiring designers will be carried along more often.

  9. To you David

    September 23, 2015 at 8:18 am

    ‘Maki Oh is the closest Nigerian womenswear brand that caters for a global audience’

    Thats a very wrong assertion.

    Last year Lisa had just one collection, (she showed in Ny and showed the same collection at LFDW)
    As far as we know, she may show her AW15 at LFDW this year again.
    Maki Oh steadily does 2 collections a year, was the first to show at NYFW (if i’m correct), Is worn (regularly) by international celebrities, featured in vogue, interview mag, elle, manreppeler,harpers bazaar etc.

    (and the final kicker) Maki oh Has been worn by FLOTUS and personally invited to the white house alongside a handful of other world class designers.
    Now thats a HUGE deal to any brand in the world let alone an African one and more specifically Nigerian.

    Pls compare Maki Oh and JBL’s track record and tell me again who ACTUALLY caters to a global audience and then who deserves this spot more

    Then come back to me and tell me ‘no Nepotism’

  10. e mi ni

    September 23, 2015 at 9:59 am

    bella naija, i can see you have a serious agenda to promote lgbt agenda.
    around spring/summer last year i had a dream that you would begin promoting homosexuality and the next day for a whole week, you began posting articles about homosexuality and transgenders indirectly supporting it.
    this week you have an unoriginal quote of the week from caitlyn jenner, you again draw attention to caitlyn jenner in this article as well as providing a link about his feature.
    be careful. the agenda you seek to promote and normalise amongst africans will lead you to despair.

  11. Ebere

    September 23, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    Autumn/ Winter where???????More like (Heat and use of Air conditioning) and Harmattan…I guess this is not for the Nigerian market.

  12. teni

    September 24, 2015 at 8:32 am

    are you in their parents bank accounts – how do you know they are well off – getout of here. i can see they did not allow u to show

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