As the number one sports fashion store in South Africa, The Cross Trainer saw it fit to share its platform and uplift women by creating a partnership, which not only empowers women but creates a lifetime opportunity for women-owned Small Medium to Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) to flourish.
“Gender equality is something we should all be aiming to achieve because greater inclusion also means more ideas to choose from. For The Cross Trainer this diversity is also targeted at empowering more women entrepreneurs through collaborating with women designers on our XT range,” explains Mark Frame, CEO at The Cross Trainer.
The XT range is manufactured by Koop Studios in collaboration with The Faktory. Both entities are women-owned companies. Koop Studio and The Faktory were originally set up to assist young aspiring designers, affording them guidance through skills development and business management.
The Cross Trainer partnered with Koop Studio due to their involvement with young designers and artists from The Unite Orange Day Campaign - a United Nations Women programme that supports and empowers women who are survivors of Gender-Based Violence through upskilling and creating employment opportunities for them.
Frame believes the country’s economy also stands to benefit from such partnerships.
“Every woman that is involved in the creation of the XT brand plays a significant economic role in their households and communities. When women are financially empowered, they stimulate economic activity through their spending and do not stay in situations that place their well-being in harm's way,” says Frame.
A Bloomberg study revealed that women are the world’s most powerful consumers, responsible for 70 to 80% of all consumer purchases through their purchase or influence on others.
According to the Nielsen Company, women are far more likely than men to be responsible for household spending, on average, 89% of women across the world reported controlling or sharing daily shopping needs, compared to only 41% of men.
Frame says The Cross Trainer, which is big on sustainability is proud to have achieved the goal of responsibly sourcing local clothing without compromising on the quality of fabrics and cutting-edge designs for the XT range – which is exclusive to The Cross Trainer. They are equally proud to have played a role in enabling women to improve their socio-economic well-being and lay claim to their fundamental human rights.
“While we may have not escaped the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic as the fashion and retail industry, brands like XT remain at the forefront of job creation and economic drivers in times like these.”
“As good corporate citizens, it is our duty to keep working on partnerships that upskill people which further accelerates the growth of the fashion industry and most importantly attracts and yields meaningful investments,” concludes Frame.
Koop Studios is currently working with young African designers and artists on the upcoming summer XT range which will be in stores in October 2021.