An Australia Awards Indonesia short course on how to succeed in the fashion business is creating a buzz on social media.
A group of 25 Indonesian budding international fashion entrepreneurs is currently attending the two-week short course, International Business Readiness – A Scholarship for the Fashion and Textiles Sector, facilitated by the Queensland University of Technology School of Fashion
The program, from 9-20 May, is designed to empower participants, revamp their business operations, and prepare them to enter the global market. It also aims to encourage more cultural collaboration between Australia and Indonesia.
During the course, Australian fashion industry representatives have enjoyed connecting with the group. For instance, fashion retailer and buyer Maxine McMaster
has arranged to meet some of the participating Indonesian designers this October at the 2016 Jakarta Fashion Week
Before heading to Australia, the group attended a pre-course workshop in April in Bandung, Indonesia where they spoke about their experiences, and the challenges of operating in the Indonesian fashion and textile industry.
Fashion designer Lenny Agustin established her label in 2002. She creates an edgy look by using traditional materials from many different parts of the archipelago. She now has 24 staff and her fashion lines include a ready to wear label called ‘Lennor ‘, sold in two Jakarta department stores.
“To go international wasn’t on my mind, I didn’t think it was necessary since we have quite a big market in Indonesia. And it’s not until last year when I participated in a trade show in Paris, I got four buyers and thought I am ready for the global market, but there are obstacles ahead,” Lenny said.
“I’m now so keen to learn about the Australian market particularly for my ready to wear brand, and this short course is perfect for me,” Lenny said
This sentiment was echoed by Denpasar-based fashion designer Putu Unik Indrawati, who found that “the business side is my weakness.” Her clothing line ‘Anemone’, has an ethnic twist and modern styling, and aims to cater to both sexes.
“I’ve been thinking about what is next for my business. I have worked very hard to build it, but can I work smarter to expand it? Then I have the opportunity to be a part of this amazing short course to guide me to find the answers that I’ve been looking for. I also get to meet these inspirational women from various backgrounds, “ she said.
As part of their Australia Awards scholarship experience, last week the group attended Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia
in Sydney and participated in workshops and industry visits.
These activities provided the participants with an understanding of Australia’s business environment, as well as strategies to plan for growth, be export ready, and gain access to finance and capital. They also enjoyed networking and mentoring opportunities, meeting influential female leaders in Australia, including at Australian design schools, clothing and textiles manufacturers and fashion design companies.
The Australia Awards
are prestigious international Scholarships and Fellowships funded by the Australian Government. They offer the next generation of global leaders an opportunity to undertake study, research and professional development in Australia and for high-achieving Australians to do the same overseas.