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LBS and Walpole launch innovation competition

02 Mar 2012


London Business School and Walpole, the organisation that represents the British luxury industry, in association with leading law firm Charles Russell and the Financial Times, have launched the Innovation in Luxury Business Plan Competition, to help promote and inspire innovation in the British luxury industry.

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 Applicants from London Business School are being invited to submit business plans that demonstrate pioneering thinking and innovative approaches in the luxury sector. The overall winner of the competition will receive a new business support package worth in excess of £10,000. Candidates who are successfully chosen for the final round of judging will receive access to experienced industry mentors from Walpole member companies as they develop their business plans in advance of the final stage of judging. 
Applicants will be judged on the quality of their business concept and articulation of the innovation, which can include market, strategic, technological and other forms of innovation that can be reasonably demonstrated as new or evolutionary for the luxury industry.
The final judging will be conducted by an expert panel of luxury executives, investors and London Business School professors. 
Commenting on the competition, Nader Tavassoli, Professor of Marketing at London Business School, said:
“The luxury sector – from cars to watches to high fashion – has always been defined by creativity and innovation in materials and design. And it is a sector ripe with opportunity for the type of technological, process and business model innovations that have been redefining industries around the globe. We look forward to providing a forum that attracts and cultivates business ideas that promise to build upon the status quo.”
Julia Carrick, CEO of Walpole said:
“The luxury sector remains conservative in its approach to business with even major brands treating innovation with caution. I am sure that the standard of entrants to this competition will be extremely high and it is hugely exciting to think that we could be on the verge of discovering industry changing innovation in British luxury.”
Edward Craig, Partner of Charles Russell said:
“The market for luxury goods and services continues to escalate at a rapid rate. Established markets show growth despite difficult economic conditions and emerging markets are experiencing explosive growth, driven by the emerging middle classes. Therefore we can anticipate the increasing demand for innovation in this sector and this competition has been launched at exactly the right time to support that.”
The competition will be launched by London Business School and Walpole on the 8th March and the deadline for competition submission is 28 March. Full details regarding the process and criteria can be found on the Innovation in Luxury London Business School homepage https://clubs.london.edu/rlg/innovation-in-luxury/ and on the Walpole website www.thewalpole.co.uk