UKFT director of international Paul Alger has been made an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to exports in the UK fashion industry.
A familiar face at fashion weeks and trade shows around the world, Alger was recognised for his work for UKFT over 30 years in helping fashion and textile designers and brands succeed in new, global markets and build thriving export businesses.
Alger has organised and led trade missions and research trips to Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, China and Saudi Arabia. He has helped thousands of businesses start their export journey and has mentored and advised many companies that have gone on to be household names.
In 2018, he was elected Chairman of the Sponsors’ Alliance, an organisation set up to represent a wide cross-sector of industries to government in the field of exports. He is a former UK Lingerie Awards judge and part of 50M’s mentoring panel.
Nigel Lugg, Chairman of UKFT, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Paul has been recognised for h is work at UKFT and awarded an MBE. He isa great champion of the industry and I have seen first-hand how he helps businesses both small and large. His knowledge is encyclopaedic and his incredibly generous and friendly approach to providing support to companies is respected throughout the world. Exports are an essential part of UKFT’s activities and to have Paul’s dedication to exports recognised in such a way is fantastic.’’
Alger added: “I really didn’t see that coming! It is such a surprise and an honour to receive an MBE for helping brands and designers fulfil their potential and fly the flag for UK design, creativity and craftsmanship around the world. To receive this kind of recognition and this accolade for doing a job I love is truly humbling. We have a great team at UKFT, mostly working away behind the scenes, so it is all the more flattering to know that someone has recognised the importance of the work we do here and has taken the time and trouble to make this recommendation. I would like to think that this is not just about me but for everyone at UKFT.”
Alger joined the British Knitting and Clothing Export Council as Projects Executive in June 1989, becoming Executive Director of the organisation when it was rebranded to become UK Fashion Exports. In 2009 the British Clothing Industry Association and UK Fashion Exports came together to form what is now UKFT, Alger became director of the export side of the association and BKCEC’s President, HRH The Princess Royal, agreed to become President of UKFT.
With support from the Department of International Trade (DIT), UKFT takes around 700 brands and companies to overseas tradeshows and showrooms each year, covering menswear, womenswear, childrenswear, lingerie, footwear, swimwear and accessories, plus home textiles, technical textiles and apparel textiles.