Johnson’s EII Announces Strategic Alliance with Seattle Fashion Incubator

The Entrepreneurship Innovation Institute and the Seattle Fashion Incubator have formed a strategic alliance to support startups in Seattle’s apparel industry.

Johnson’s EII Announces Strategic Alliance with Seattle Fashion Incubator

The Entrepreneurship Innovation Institute (EII) at the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University and the Seattle Fashion Incubator (SFI) have formed a strategic alliance focused on supporting fashion and apparel startups in the Seattle region. As part of this strategic alliance, SFI members startups will submit projects for EII to vet with Johnson MBA students for the opportunity to receive much-needed services such as analysis, consulting, customer validation and engagement, financial modeling, and business or market planning.

“Through this strategic alliance, Johnson MBA students will gain direct experience in dealing with the range of challenges that innovative apparel startups face, and in turn, these SFI companies will gain access to the professional marketing, financial, and planning services they need and seek,” said Rhett L. Weiss, executive director of the Entrepreneurship Innovation Institute at Johnson at Cornell University. “We welcome SFI to the global network of alliances that we are building across major entrepreneurship hubs.”

“I am excited about collaboration between EII and SFI,” says Mikhail Stolpner, MBA ’15 (CQ), EII Fellow, and lead in EII’s relationship with the  Seattle Fashion Incubator. An entrepreneur himself, Stolpner used his network to connect EII with incubators in Seattle. As EII’s lead in this alliance, he has facilitated the signing of an MOU and will assist with setting up the workflow between EII and MBA students. Although SFI  is a small incubator, Stolpner says, “it is a very unique and fascinating market.”

The services the Johnson MBAs provide via EII will supplement SFI’s existing advisory services, helping to promote the growth and development essential not only to support existing fashion and apparel businesses in Seattle, but also to attract new businesses in this industry. Seattle Fashion Incubator aims to play a unifying role for the fashion and apparel industry in the Seattle region by offering accessible and affordable design space, specialty goods and  equipment, professional coaching, and industry-specific presentation space. Learn more about SFI’s work at

About Johnson at Cornell University
Johnson at Cornell University prides itself on being an intense, collaborative community that functions like a high-performance workplace. Our world-renowned faculty educates leaders for the connected world through five MBA programs, PhD Program, and non-degree executive education. Johnson also offers programs across Latin America, Mexico, and China.

About Johnson at Cornell University’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Institute

The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Institute encompasses course offerings, networking and mentoring opportunities, and hands-on, real-deal learning experiences, including a suite of student-run entrepreneurship and innovation services. We link students to a dynamic network of teachers, researchers, entrepreneurs, inventors, investors, mentors, business leaders, and other experts; provide them with exposure, engagement, and feedback; and charge them with responsibility for results.


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