e-pitti.com, an online trade fair project created by Pitti Immagine and FieraDigitale, and FTA (Fashion Technology Accelerator), a business accelerator for global companies and "fashion tech" start-ups, have announced their partnership to support the development of emerging companies within the fashion industry.

According to the latest available data, global investments in operating start-ups have reached USD 1 billion in 2011 and USD 1.6 billion in 2012 (source: www.gpbullhound.com). The agreement between e-pitti.com and FTA Milan aims to stimulate these events.

According to the e-pitti.com management, Italy, with all its creativity and high quality manufacturing, represents an ideal ground for digital technologies applied to fashion. The idea of promoting this industry is fundamental to the project designed and launched by Pitti Immagine and FieraDigitale. Their mission is to help the fashion supply chain through new digital strategies, facilitating online growth, especially on international level. Hence, in October 2013, e-pitti.com has promoted Decoded Fashion in Italy, the first Italian global forum dedicated to start-ups and fashion.

Similarly, FTA supports the rise of young companies, which operate between fashion and technology with expertise in management consulting, thanks to a network of international partnerships. In just six months of operation, the first two accelerated companies, Leonardi Milan and The Passion Cycling Couture, are already achieving early results in foreign markets. In addition, they have already started to liaise with a third company, Warda (also see S.I. issue 260, “Under control”, page 22).

Francesco Bottigliero, CEO of FieraDigitale, said: "This agreement with FTA is an alliance between research and business. It arises from the desire to find new talents, helping them to emerge and create a transmission of ideas that leads to a contagion business. We want to give our support to Italian companies that use new technologies."