Karen Harvey founded Fashion Tech Forum in 2013 to create a space for fashion and technology leaders to come together to better understand how each industry was approaching the future of retail. In 2010, as her consulting firm was sitting at the center of the global luxury, fashion, retail and related innovation communities, Karen and her team identified a seismic shift developing globally that would revolutionize these industries. As she explored these changes, Karen realized this new dynamic would alter what leaders needed to compete, creating an identity crisis for fashion and retail. Traditional approaches to developing leaders suddenly seemed insufficient. Karen could see outsiders would disrupt fashion and retail at all levels, from new types of companies to emerging technologies to the next generation of talent that was impatient, hungry, digital and independent. She was both deeply curious and nervous. Mostly, Karen wanted to learn more to help her consulting clients maintain their edge and recruit the right talent to lead their brands, ultimately ensuring relevance for Karen Harvey Consulting Group for the foreseeable future
Maia Wojcik was then the VP, Global Talent Scout at Karen Harvey Consulting Group. She understood, almost more than anyone else in the field, what was happening with creative millennials, how they were thinking about their work and how they wanted to express themselves. Maia and Karen both believed there could be power to bringing together multiple generations to share ideas and give voice to a new way of working. They realized they could connect the most inspiring people from their networks, combining Karen’s years of developing live content and training programs with their shared insights into global talent trends to create Fashion Tech Forum. They envisioned a high-level event that would create the space for the most influential fashion and tech innovators to develop ways to collaborate, discover innovations, and share best practices in a unique format, in which discovery and honest dialogue would naturally occur. With this inspiration and with true entrepreneurial spirit, we launched the first FTF in 2014. Our annual conference is an invitation-only event with 800+ industry leaders, including CEOs, founders, creative directors, investors, and disrupters
Fashion Tech Forum provides a platform for discovery and inspiration for the leaders of fashion, retail and technology to collaborate to build communities and partnerships for sustainable brands of the future. FTF provides an environment for the most curious, committed and bold innovators, who are willing to understand the inherent cultural differences between fashion and technology creators, so that authentic conversations and true collaborations can be established.