Media Release: CEO spearheads exciting new direction for WA fashion industry
The man responsible for turning around some of Perth’s most famous sporting events will take up the reins as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Fashion Council of WA (FCWA).
Stephen Ayles, who is well known in Perth for his success with the Hopman Cup and the World Super 6 PGA, will spearhead a new structure at FCWA to drive the fashion and creative industries in Western Australia.
The new structure will allow FCWA founder Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan to focus on her role and passion as Creative Director.
Mr Ayles’ new direction will showcase the commercial potential of FCWA’s two major events – the Swim + Resort Series and the Perth Fashion Festival.
FCWA Chairman Richard Poulson said the CEO’s vast experience will contribute to a new strategy for FCWA, which will focus on driving tourism for the state with a plan to create stronger partnerships and greater exposure around the Asian market.
“We are delighted to have the former Chief Commercial Officer of the PGA of Australia who has worked in London, Auckland, Brisbane and Melbourne on major sporting events with more than 20 years’ experience in senior executive roles,” said Mr Poulson.
“His most notable appointments included Commercial Executive of the International Tennis Federation, and as Commercial Director of Tennis Australia where he became the driving force behind the successful strategy for the growth of the Australian Open Tennis Grand Slam in the Asia Pacific region.
“This is an exciting time for fashion in WA. Mr Ayles’ extensive commercial knowledge will elevate our events to a higher level within the commercial fashion and tourism sectors,” the Chairman said.
Mr Ayles said he would use his new role as FCWA CEO to build on the great work achieved by WA’s vibrant fashion industry.
“I certainly want to capitalise on what is already a successful and growing industry within WA, but I see potential to push a greater commercial focus to generate more exposure within the Asian market.
“The longevity of the Perth Fashion Festival is a credit to FCWA, as is the vision for Swim + Resort to be a world class event that showcases all of WA’s great natural attributes to the world.
“The role they’ve played in supporting the industry and tourism in this state is significant, and, with our renewed focus, FCWA is excited to take Western Australia’s creative industries to new heights,” Mr Ayles said.
Creative Director Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan said Mr Ayles appointment was an exciting development for the future of Fashion Council WA.
“I am very much looking forward to working with Steve in his role as CEO. This new direction will take both the Swim + Resort Series and the Perth Fashion Festival to the next level.
“His highly successful commercial background will assist us in promoting the creative industries in WA to a wider global audience.
“Steve’s appointment as CEO will allow me to focus on the creative side of the business, and as a collective I believe our team will take fashion in WA to new heights,” Mrs Harvey-Hanrahan said.
About Fashion Council WA
As a not for profit peak body and association, Fashion Council WA (FCWA) is committed to supporting the interests of the WA Fashion industry with a mandate to represent, promote and champion.
FCWA provides opportunities for designers, businesses and brands to enhance their cultural, commercial and creative position in the industry via an integrated program of events, media, marketing, partnership and industry initiatives.
As a not for profit organisation, FCWA works together with our valued partners, members, and select government departments to represent and advocate for the fashion industry.
Photo: The West Australian