Fashion Bosses: Rubana Huq and Kim Winser

Bangladeshi clothing manufacturer Rubana Huq, who employs over 5000 women in eight factories, talks to British retailer Kim Winser who has been responsible for some major fashion brands.

What do two women leaders in the global fashion industry have to say to each other? From how they got into the world of fashion to factory-floor culture and leadership, Bangladeshi factory boss Rubana Huq and British fashion retailer Kim Winser compare their experiences.

Rubana Huq (left), Kim Winser

Kim Winser has been described as one of Europe’s most successful businesswomen. She spent 20 years with the British retailer Marks and Spencer, where a conversation with her boss in the elevator led to an interview to become the first woman in the company’s commercial field and then its youngest divisional director. Kim is also credited with breathing life back into major fashion brands such as Pringle of Scotland and Aquascutum. She now runs her own fashion label called Winser London.

Rubana Huq is a prize-winning poet and the “accidental” Managing Director of the Mohammadi Group. Her company owns eight factories and employs 9000 men and women making garments for export. She is among only a handful of female entrepreneurs in the clothing trade in Bangladesh and wants to see more women leading change in the industry as it recovers from the tragedy of the Rana Plaza factory collapse in 2013.

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