By Oladapo Udom
Lagos – Mr Ayodeji Olugbade, Managing Director, Atlantic Exhibition Nigeria Limited, says that it is time that Nigeria starts exporting locally made fabrics as an alternative source of income.
Olugbade told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that Nigeria was blessed with diverse fabric materials and talented fashion designers to garner enough income for the country.
He spoke at the ongoing two-day 6th Lagos Fashion Exhibition at Eko Hotel and Suites.
“Nigeria is a blessed country with diverse cultures and textile designs which if properly harnessed can contribute to the growth of the country’s GDP.
“We also have a lot of talented young entrepreneurs with vast knowledge of fashion designing,” he said.
The manager said that one of the reasons of organising the fashion exhibition was to create a platform for fashion designers to network and display the beauty of their products.
“This platform is a business platform and not just for entertainment.
“I urge everyone interested in fashion to take advantage of this exhibition to increase their knowledge about the industry,” Olugbade said.
Also, Mrs Funmi Ladipo, President, Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria (FADAN) said that the exhibition was geared toward promoting wearing made-in-Nigeria products.
“We must encourage textile manufacturing in Nigeria by wearing made-in- Nigeria clothes which will inevitably increase the value of our currency at the international market,” she said.
Ladipo appealed to the Federal Government to support the growth of the industry by creating an enabling environment that would encourage people to wear locally made fabrics.
The president said that the fashion industry was fast developing because up-and-coming fashion entrepreneurs had become more creative in aesthetic designs.
Meanwhile, Miss Adesola Thomson, Sector Manager, Hospitality, Tourism and Entertainment, Access Bank’ said that Access Bank was proud to be one of the sponsors of the exhibition.
Thomson said that this was a part of the bank’s corporate social responsibilities ( CSR) aimed at contributing to the needs of customers by encouraging an alternative source of income.
“Gone are the days when majority of fresh graduates chase white-collar jobs. A lot of individuals are going into the fashion industry because it is lucrative.
“There is a large market for the industry and the prospects of the industry is high,” she said.
The manager said that the bank had a designated desk for women in business and also aspiring entrepreneurs.