Fashion for Good’s South Asia Innovation Programme officially started with the selection of 9 new innovators. With innovations in raw materials, wastewater management, dyeing solutions, textile waste solutions, blockchain, AI and machine learning innovations, the first batch of regional start-ups joined a global selection of start-ups at the cutting-edge who are driving the industry’s transformation towards a circular system.
Fashion for Good’s Managing Director Katrin Ley opened the Fashion for Good South Asia Innovation Programme. Regional launch partners, Aamir Akhtar, CEO of Arvind Mills, Lakshmi Poti, Programme Manager Sustainable Raw Materials at Laudes Foundation (formerly C&A Foundation) and Dipali Goenka, Joint Managing Director of Welspun Ltd., were amongst the jury members who selected the innovators to join the programme.
The selected innovators in the first-ever South Asia Innovation Programme batch are: Alt Mat, Block Texx, Descatuk, Indra, Infinichains, JSP, PurFi, Sasmira and Textile Genesis.
“We are staunch ambassadors of industry-wide collaboration. With the launch of our regional Programme in South Asia we strengthen our network and position us to better serve local manufacturers, key supply chain actors, brands and innovators. By connecting them to our global network and leading players in the fashion ecosystem, we help the innovators’ solutions and technologies reach scale,” says Katrin Ley, Managing Director – Fashion for Good.
Sixteen innovators from across the region attended the launch of the Fashion for Good South Asia Innovation Programme to pitch their innovations for the opportunity to join the Programme.
“The Fashion for Good South Asia Innovation Programme brings together the most promising innovators whose technologies are set to transform the industry with manufacturers, like us, on the ground. The platform provides a pool of incredible talent that we can tap into and implement in our own on-going efforts to move our supply chain towards circularity, and we are pleased to support the Programme and lead the way in sustainability,” says Dipali Goenka, Joint Managing Director, Welspun.
Over the next four months, the 9 innovators, will receive mentoring, bespoke coaching and support from Fashion for Good and its corporate partners, as well as access to a global network of partners and like-minded organisations, providing these innovators with the tools they need to grow. With the addition of the new innovators to its programme, Fashion for Good is seeking to scale these promising innovations from and for this region with a particular focus in raw materials, wastewater management, dyeing solutions, textile waste solutions, blockchain, AI and machine learning innovations. Launch partners Arvind and Welspun will provide support for these innovators in the form of local and manufacturing expertise and the possibility to partner on pilot projects to test the viability of their innovations in real-world, manufacturing processes.
In addition to the selection of the innovators, several keynote speakers from across the industry were invited to share their insights and guidance during the launch of the Innovation Programme. Nicole Rycroft, Founder and Executive Director of global sustainable sourcing organisation Canopy provided her perspectives on impact. Bob Assenberg, Director of Good Fashion Fund, which was initiated by Fashion for Good to drive the financing of innovative, industry solutions in India, Bangladesh and Vietnam, addressed the audience on the topic of investment.
“South Asia is a critically important region for the global fashion industry, and indeed, one of the priority geographies for Laudes Foundation. We are thrilled to be able to support this group of creative and ambitious innovators who are each contributing to making fashion a force for good,” says Leslie Johnston, Executive Director, Laudes Foundation (formerly C&A Foundation).