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DHL Award for International Fashion Potential 2018 winner announced

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Knitwear brand Hades is the winner of the DHL Award for International Fashion Potential 2018.

In 2017, DHL and The British Fashion Council launched the DHL Award for International Fashion Potential. The award recognises promising British brands and provides them with the support they need to realise their potential for international growth and development, and comes with a cash prize of £20,000.

The inaugural winner was Rixo London. Founded by Henrietta Rix and Orlagh McCloskey, it offers vintage-inspired hand-painted prints, and is stocked by retailers such as Selfridges and Harrods. In the 12 months since winning the award, Rixo has gone from strength to strength, and last week staged a vibrant debut presentation at the spring 19 edition of London Fashion Week.

In 2018, therefore, it was no surprise that almost 100 fashion brands put themselves forward for the award. From those, five outstanding applicants were invited to the final stage: Dai, Hades, Missy Empire, Represent and Soru Jewellery.

The finalists were each invited to Somerset House during London Fashion Week to meet the panel of judges and make their final pitch in person. The panel consisted of Charlotte Whitehead from the British Fashion Council, Drapers editor Keely Stocker, and Shannon Diett and Martin Price from DHL, both of whom are experts in international logistics and ecommerce.

Amid fierce competition, Hades – a classic British knitwear brand – was selected as the winner. The label, represented by sisters Cassie and Isabel Holland, walked away with £20,000 to develop their international offering alongside mentoring from the British Fashion Council and DHL’s ecommerce specialists.

Martin Price, head of e-commerce business development at DHL Express UK, said: “All five businesses should be proud of reaching the final stage. Ultimately, the panel selected Hades as the winners because they combined great fashion designs with a clear and compelling international strategy. We look forward to seeing their global growth!”

Isabel Holland from HADES said: “It feels incredible to win the DHL Award for International Fashion Potential, especially considering the calibre of finalists. The £20,000 prize money will allow us to grow as a team and as a brand. We’re really excited to explore how we can open up our international markets.”

  • To find out more about the award and register your interest for the 2019 award, visit

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