NEW YORK –The South Korean MCST (Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism)/KOCCA (Korea Creative Content Agency) and the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) with support from Samsung Fashion and Design Funds (SFDF) today announce Concept Korea, a two-year partnership to help American and Korean designers build competitive businesses at home and abroad.

Global fashion is expanding once more as the Asian market becomes more relevant and stronger than ever.  Concept Korea endeavors to promote the exchange of ideas, commerce, employment opportunities, training, exposure and relationships necessary for emerging and established designers to succeed in foreign markets.

“As the first affiliation of its kind, Concept Korea’s primary objective is to utilize each other’s strategies and resources in marketing, retail relationships and sourcing, creating a crossover of opportunity that will benefit our respective designers,” said Steven Kolb, Executive Director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.  “We are excited to expand opportunities in the Korean market for our members.”

Concept Korea will act as a catalyst to the Asian market and particularly serve as an insight to Seoul as the new and exciting Fashion Capital of Asia, a city to rival the likes of London and Paris,” added In-Chon Yu, South Korea’s Minister of Culture, Sports and Toursim.  “This exciting development in partnership with the CFDA is an excellent chance for our designers to build their businesses artistically and economically across the globe.”

Concept Korea will kick off with a six-designer showcase during New York Fashion Week.  The designer installation will be available for viewing by appointment at the New York Public Library on Saturday, February 13 and Sunday, February 14.  The six Korean designers include: Andy and Debb, Juun J, Kuho, Doii Paris, Roliat and Demoo Parkchoonmoo.  Three of Europe’s leading conceptual artists—Rosemarie Trockel, Curtis Anderson and Jack Pierson—will create a stunning environment for the designers’ collections, combining eastern fashion and western art.

Concept Korea arrives at a time when South Korea ’s $28 billion fashion industry is rising with innovation.  The development of “green” environmental textiles, as well as smart technologies embedded in fabrics, have contributed to the growth.  Retail channels have also expanded to meet demands for distribution.  South Korea is urbanizing “mall” shopping, revitalizing large-scale standard stores, and keeping up with online and mobile commerce.

As part of the program, a selection of CFDA designers will be sold in a CFDA Shop-in-Shop in Seoul and introduced to Korean retailers. This two-pronged approach will be invaluable to American designers breaking into the ever-expanding Korean market.

Concept Korea is firmly intended to be an educational endeavor for young designers venturing into the Asian market,” said Jae-Woong Lee, President of KOCCA. “And we expect Korean designers will find the same value through this direct relationship to fashion in the United States .”

About the CFDA

The Council of Fashion Designers of America, Inc, (CFDA) is a not-for-profit trade association that leads industry-wide initiatives and whose membership consists of more than 350 of America’s foremost womenswear, menswear, jewelry, and accessory designers. In addition to hosting the annual CFDA Fashion Awards, which recognize the top creative talent in the industry, the organization offers programs which support professional development and scholarships, including the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, the Geoffrey Beene Design Scholar Award, the Liz Claiborne Scholarship Award, and the CFDA/Teen Vogue Scholarship. Member support is provided through the Business Services Network, a high-profile group of companies offering designers strategic opportunities. The CFDA Foundation, Inc. is a separate, not-for-profit organized to mobilize the membership to raise funds for charitable causes. Through the Foundation, the CFDA created and manages Fashion Targets Breast Cancer; raises funds for HIV/AIDS organizations with 7th on Sale; addresses the issue of model health with The CFDA Health Initiative; and is a key participant in other programs such as the annual Fashion’s Night Out. For more information, please visit

About the South Korean MCST/KOCCA

The Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Korea’s main goals are to educate and improve quality of life for its citizens by supporting cultural events, activities, sports, tourism, and religious activities.  Such entities as the National Museum , the National Theater, and the National Library are under the Ministry in order to promote Korea ‘s artistic traditions as a foundation upon which future generations are encouraged to build.  The current Minister of Culture and Tourism is Yu In-chon.

About Samsung Fashion and Design Funds (SFDF)

Established in 2005 by Samsung Cheil Industries, the Samsung Fashion and Design Fund (SFDF) strives to give young designers of Korean descent greater opportunities and boost their exceptional potential. Every year a select number of design teams are chosen that exhibit the necessary creative talent and business strength to become an internationally recognizable force in the fashion industry.  Past winners such as Doo-Ri Chung and Richard Chai are just two out of ten past SFDF recipients that continue to inspire its purpose with each season; by carving the way for emerging hopefuls to follow and create an exemplary vision of their own.


Press Contacts:

Danielle Billinkoff, CFDA, 212 768 5707 or

Mesh Chhibber, Relative MO, +44 784 188 7333 or