Since launching her fashion brand ‘Nenya’ in Leeds just over a year ago, Ukrainian refugee Yana Smaglo has gone from strength to strength, and has now launched her brand with online retailer Debenham’s.

Having escaped the war in Ukraine two years ago, Yana has received support from businesses and individuals across Yorkshire, and now has a successful fashion company, promoting brands from Ukraine, and exporting to over 15 countries around the world.

This new development comes shortly after her winning ‘Indie Business of the Year’ at the Smart Works ‘Force for Good Ball’ in November last year. Yana stated, “Winning the award at the end of last year was a brilliant end to 2023 and showed recognition of my brand and all the work I have done since escaping to the UK. To start 2024 with my products launching on Debenhams site is a great boost for my online sales. I hope to increase this income stream this year and would love to partner with other brands like John Lewis and Selfridges too. The more connections I can make, the more I can continue to support my people and industries back in Ukraine”.

Antonia Kinlan, who oversaw all the business support for Yana added, “I am so proud of how Yana has embraced all the support she has been given and has harnessed it to develop a successful business. It has been brilliant working with everyone involved, and really does showcase teamwork from people in Yorkshire.”