Here are the sartorial gurus you’ll need to impress – or horrify – to make it on to The Kernel’s Top 10 Best- and Worst-Dressed Entrepreneurs in Europe.
IRRA ARIELLA KHI
A globetrotting, fiesty fashion model with a first from Oxford, Irra speaks 9 languages (yes, really). She’s worked across New York and Hong Kong as well as strutting the catwalks of Paris, London and Milan. Irra launched fashion start-up Soul of Fashion in 2009, and is currently working on the hardest start-up of all: raising her baby daughter, Myla.
Anna Bance launched online luxury retail company GirlMeetsDress.com with co-founder Xavier de Lecaros-Aquise after three years at luxury brand Hermes as the company’s UK PR manager. With credentials like that we’ve no doubt she’ll be handbagging the uglies and patting down the perfectionists like a pro!
The Kernel’s US Editor is a part-time model but a full-time critic. Merciless in his takedowns and sparing with his praise, arch analyst Ezra is sure to have the ill-attired quaking in their yarmulkes.
JULIA FOWLER & GEOFF WATTS
Hot-to-trot Geoff Watts and his EDITD co-founder Julia Fowler together represent London’s best-known fashion start-up power couple. Billed as “fashion forecasting with market intelligence”, EDITD won Seedcamp in 2010 and went on to raise over a million quid from Index Ventures and others. We’ll be looking to Julia and Geoff for some evidence-based forward thinking.
Here’s a lady who knows the value of fashion. The demure Nathalie sold her last start-up, PriceMinister, for $250 million. She currently heads up Shopcade, the Pinterest for e-commerce that is popping up in Facebook feeds everywhere.
Fresh from a stint on the small screen as one of Alan Sugar’s apprentices, sharp-suited and tousle-haired Nick Holzherr was named Birmingham Young Professional of the Year in 2011. His latest start-up is Whisk, an app that brings together online recipes with online shopping.
Glamour puss and emerging business guru Bindi Karia graces our panel to provide wit, wisdom and a sharp eye for footwear. This lady in Louboutins brings a forensic eye for luxury to the proceedings.
Kernel political columnist and man-about-town Joshua Lachkovic has a reputation for being a hit with the ladies, no doubt thanks to his dapper stylings. Rarely seen without a cigarette and a pocket square, this stylish gent will be on the look-out for men who combine modernity with elegance.
Inma has been called one of the world’s leading digital media strategists by publications such as Fortune and Time – but we love her because she’s one of the most fashion-forward ladies in the European tech industry. Currently a partner at Opus Corporate Finance, Inma is also a recognised commentator in the media on the digitalisation of work and life and the luxury industry. She’s also the founder of TechCouture, a forward-thinking fashion and technology platform.
When we announced this project and asked for recommendations for the judging panel, there was one name that kept coming back to us: Sara McVittie. Sarah is co-founder of Dressipi, a free fashion advice and recommendation service. The Times recently called Sarah one of the UK’s top rising female entrepreneurs, and she was named by Management Today as one of the top 35 female entrepreneurs under the age of 35.
Kernel co-founder David Rosenberg graduated from Cambridge in 2011 with a degree in law and some seriously snappy dress sense. He now works in business development for Foursquare in Europe. Shapeless off-the-peg numbers are a no-no for this understated style icon.
The Kernel’s waspish Editor-in-Chief couldn’t be kept away from this panel, promising to clean up his act, and his trainers, if we let him on. But what he lacks in fashion nous he makes up for with a tongue as sharp as a desert lime. Milo’s job is to keep the other judges in line… and make the tea.
Nominations for Best- and Worst-Dressed Entrepreneur in Europe are NOW OPEN. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions.
The entrepreneurs with the most nominations in each category will receive the People’s Choice Award for either Best- or Worst-Dressed. There will also be a Special Mention in each category for the most fabulous and the most egregious single outfit seen in the last twelve months.
Nominations close at midnight on Friday, 7 September, so get voting!