Fashion Hackathon set for MBFW New York, winning app to be launched by CFDA


Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York is set to host a “Fashion Hackathon” this February, tasking teams of tech hackers with building an app that solves a challenge facing the industry.

Hosted by Decoded Fashion, who has previously run conferences focused on fashion and technology in both New York and London, the initiative will see fashion and retail executives joining 30 teams on the morning of February 2 to discuss their pain points, the technology they currently use, and the technology they wish existed.

These conversation will inspire the hackers to come up with the new apps, designing and building them within the space of 24 hours.

The best three will then have until February 14 to prepare (with mentorship) for a finale due to take place at MBFW. There they will present to a panel of judges from both the technology and fashion worlds, including Steven Kolb, CEO of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), Harrison Weber of The Next Web, and Benita Singh of Source4Style.

The winning team will win cash in the region of $15-$25k as well as the opportunity to have their creation launched by the CFDA.

Rachel Arthur is a business journalist specialising in fashion and technology. Alongside her work as the founder and editor of Fashion & Mash, she regularly contributes to titles including Forbes, Wired, The Daily Telegraph, The Business of Fashion, Fashionista, Mashable, Dazed and more. She is a regular speaker at conferences around the world, as well as an advisor on digital strategy and innovation to leading retail and luxury brands, and a mentor to start-ups on the likes of John Lewis’ JLAB accelerator programme. She was previously based in New York as a senior editor for leading online fashion trade publication and trend forecaster WGSN, where she managed global coverage of the industry from a communications, branding and technology standpoint.