// London’s West End launches pop-up competition programme
// The programme allows companies to showcase their work on London’s world-famous streets
// Westminster City Council is offering grants of up to £5000
A new pop-up competition programme has launched in London’s West End in an effort to provide opportunities for small scale businesses and start-ups to have presence in central London.
The competition launches to offer prime retail space to innovative brands on and around Oxford Street, Regent Street and in Mayfair.
Westminster City Council, in partnership with New West End Company and The Crown Estate, have collectively launched the programme.
READ MORE: London’s West End “optimistic” about recovery despite £338m loss
The programme aims to help shape the future of the UK’s high streets by testing out innovative concepts through a programme of events, services, and activities.
The 10 vacant units will allow companies to showcase their work on London’s world-famous streets over a period of three months.
The programme looks to attract businesses that fall into the following four categories:
• Fashion Laboratories: Giving a new generation of designers the opportunity to reimagine retail and challenge the way that fashion is consumed under business models that support sustainability.
• Dreamscapes: Improve customers’ journey and experience of the area via the creation of seasonal spaces.
• Mixed Reality Spaces: Diversify the existing offer by incorporating mixed reality spaces that use mixed media and digital art to create installations.
• Wellness and wellbeing: Bringing a offer to suit the evolving needs of consumers who are increasingly looking to fit wellness and wellbeing into their daily lives.
Westminster City Council is offering grants of up to £5000 to further enhance brand profiles and help fund fitout and installations.
“From Alexander McQueen to Hussein Chalayan, emerging British designers have long turned to the West End to start their businesses,” Westminster City Council Cabinet Member for Business, Licensing and Planning, Matthew Green said.
“Now, Westminster City Council’s pop-up programme will enable the next generation of creative design and innovation to flourish as we support new businesses and starts-ups to grow and thrive in the heart of the West End.”
New West End Company associate director Luciana Magliocco said: “We are thrilled to be giving inspiring new business leaders the opportunity to showcase their brands and offerings in London’s West End.
“The high street is evolving and the past year has been a catalyst for more rapid change. We are ready to embrace and welcome new ideas and business models to ensure our district remains relevant to future visitors and responds to changing customer trends.
“The temporary new landscape created by the pop-up ventures will help to feed the evolution of the West End’s post-Covid environment and retail and leisure ecosystem.”
The Crown Estate senior asset manager, Katerina Mercury said: “As we look ahead to the future of the West End, partnerships are vital in exploring new and innovative concepts.
“This pop-Up programme is a great opportunity to build on our continued investment and evolution of the West End, and we look forward to working with Westminster City Council and NWEC as the programme develops.”