A new wave of innovators is joining the Fashion for Good-Plug and Play Accelerator.
The sustainable textile and circular fashion innovation platform has welcomed 10 innovators–Checkerspot, Dimpora, FARFARM, FastFeetGrinded, IndiDye, Indigo Mills Designs, MonoChain, pondTextile, Pure Waste Textiles and VeChain–into the program that aims to reshape the fashion industry for good. Each will participate in the 12-week curriculum, including mentorship and business development opportunities with corporate partners.
The 10 entrepreneurs that make up the fifth accelerator group were selected from hundreds of applicants. Fashion for Good said while each innovator has a special value proposition, “this batch has a focus on innovative data management, new materials, dyeing technology and end of use solutions.” The goal of the accelerator is to drive market validation and ready these technologies for implementation at scale.
In the textile product development realm, is Checkerspot, a technology platform that enables the design—at a molecular level—of new materials, while Dimpora has invented a waterproof membrane free of hazardous chemicals that delivers breathable and high-performing material.
Looking to advance the use of recycled materials, FastFeetGrinded seeks to make footwear circular by collecting and recycling used shoes into new shoes. Indigo Mills Designs has created an Indigo foam dyeing process that produces zero water discharge and minimal dye waste, while Pure Waste Textiles produces ecologically sustainable and recycled fabrics and yarns by taking offcuts and spinning waste from factories in India and mechanically recycling them into yarns.
Several firms are involved in using plant-based materials in fiber production. IndiDye has developed a low-environmental-footprint dyeing method for their natural plant-based dyes. The new process uses sound waves to bind natural dyes to cellulosic fibers.
PondTextile has developed a 100 percent plant-based, biodegradable resin made to replace petroleum-derived polyester fiber. The material is derived from plant starch with the possibility for feedstock to be sourced from waste streams. FARFARM develops responsible fabrics using agroforestry systems that regenerate nature and communities in Brazil.
Those looking to use technology are MonoChain, which has developed a blockchain platform that facilitates the reuse of fashion items and allows brands to generate new revenue streams by connecting them to the resale market, and VeChain, which uses blockchain technology to secure product data that enables retailers and manufacturers to collect, manage and share product data.
Fashion for Good was launched in 2017 and is supported by the C&A Foundation as a founding partner. The Fashion for Good-Plug and Play Accelerator gives promising start-up innovators the expertise and access to funding they need to grow.
The accelerator program is part of Fashion for Good’s Innovation Platform, which also includes a Scaling Program and the Good Fashion Fund. The scaling program supports innovations that have passed the proof-of-concept phase, with a dedicated team that offers support and access to expertise, customers and capital.
The Fashion for Good-Plug and Play Accelerator is run in collaboration with Plug and Play, an active early-stage investor, and corporate partners Adidas, C&A, Galeries Lafayette, Kering, PVH Corp., Target and Zalando.