The Fashion Design Council of Canada (FDCC) and IMG Fashion, jointly announced IMG taking ownership of World MasterCard Fashion Week.

Robin Kay, President of the FDCC and Executive Director of World MasterCard Fashion Week announced today that Fashion Week will now be owned by IMG Canada and operated in collaboration with IMG Fashion – global leader in fashion event production and management. IMG will continue to work with local fashion consultants, in order to keep the event regionally significant, while working to further elevate the event to the international stage.

In 1999, Kay, as president of the FDCC, created Fashion Week in Toronto to stimulate a demand for Canadian designers nationally and globally. For 13 years and 26 seasons, hundreds of thousands of fashion professionals attended the biannual event with media from around the globe covering each season resulting in countless media impressions and massive exposure for Canadian designers. Under Kay’s leadership, fashion week in Toronto grew to become the second largest fashion week in North America. The FDCC commissioned IMG in 2010 to consult on a variety of event matters including production, designer outreach, marketing and sponsorship sales.

Robin Kay, President of the FDCC and Executive Director of World MasterCard Fashion Week.

The move marks Kay’s exit as Executive Director of World MasterCard Fashion Week, however she will remain the president of the FDCC and will continue to support and mentor Canadian designers serving a vital role as consultant to the event bringing her vast knowledge of the Canadian fashion landscape and essential industry relationships.

“Creating Fashion Week in Toronto was a career dream for me as I was able to translate my skills as a designer and retailer into a celebration of Canadian fashion that has supported so many talented people to find an audience and a global runway. In business, timing is everything, and I am confident that the time is right for IMG to take World MasterCard Fashion Week to the next level,” says Kay. “I have no plans to disappear and I will remain committed to helping and nurturing Canadian designers shine on the catwalk.”

“I’ve worked with Robin for eight years on Fashion Week and it truly couldn’t have been done without her energy, vision and support,” says Joe Mimran, founder and creative director of Joe Fresh Style and chairman of the FDCC Board of Directors. “I look forward to seeing Fashion Week evolve and grow as it leverages IMG’s global infrastructure and expertise.”

Collaboratively, the FDCC and IMG made the monumental decision to include World MasterCard Fashion Week to the already impressive roster of fashion weeks that IMG Fashion owns and commercially represents. Toronto now joins the likes of New York, London, Milan, Berlin, Australia, Tokyo, Mumbai, Istanbul, Miami, Russia and many more top international events worldwide, opening the door to a global network of expertise, contacts and numerous fashion initiatives that will undoubtedly give Canadian designers unprecedented benefits.

“We look forward to the exciting changes ahead. Our main goal will remain to focus on Canadian design talent, offering them a world-renowned platform to debut their latest collections and present themselves to an international audience of media and industry professionals,” says Sam Galet, VP Managing Director, IMG Canada. “We will continue to focus on opening doors and offering solutions to designers that will allow them to reach their ultimate business goals,” added Danny Fritz, VP Co- Managing Director, IMG Canada.

“Over the last three years, IMG Fashion has been working side by side with Robin Kay and the Fashion Design Council of Canada witnessing the tremendous strides that they have taken in developing the event and advancing the Canadian fashion industry as a whole,” said Peter Levy Managing Director and Senior Vice President, IMG Fashion Events and Properties. “Continuing to work with a panel of regional consultants and industry professionals, will ensure the event stays true to its Canadian roots, while being positioned as one of the most important stops on the international fashion week circuit.”

Established in 1999, the FDCC and Toronto Fashion Week have helped jump-start the careers of many Canadian designers and have single-handedly brought the Canadian Catwalk to the rest of the world. During her tenure, Robin Kay oversaw 26 seasons, hundreds of designer runway shows and presentations, and thousands of guests. Designer highlights include Missoni, Philip Bloch, Pink Tartan, Joe Fresh, Jay Manual , Cynthia Rowley, David Dixon and Bustle to name a few.

World MasterCard Fashion Week – Spring 2013 Collections will take place at David Pecaut Square on October 22 through 26, 2012.

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