‘The Billion Dollar Collection’, launched today by non-profit H&M Foundation, presents 10 innovative sustainable start-ups that could change the face of the fashion industry. Showcased as garments in a virtual fashion collection, each start-up features a price tag reflecting the estimated support each company believes they need to achieve scale for their disruptive innovations.
In April we met up with our GCA community for a virtual Alumni Week to connect and collaborate, and to infuse inspiration, energy and confidence into the GCA winners important quest of making the fashion industry more sustainable.
Our Innovation Accelerator Program for the Global Change Award winners is designed to accelerate the development of their innovations to reach the market quicker and therefore driving change in the fashion industry. This year, our Accelerator delivered knowhow from an impressive list of guest speakers, but it also played an important role in giving a sense of belonging and moral support to our winners because of the pandemic.
With only 10 years left to reach the 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals, disruptive innovations on how to solve the planet’s most urgent challenges are more important than ever. After five years of incredible innovations within circular fashion, we are now looking at how to extend the scope to create an even bigger impact. Therefore, the next round of Global Change Award will launch next year.
Through Global Change Award we support innovation to move from early stage ideas to market readiness. We are backing game changers in their early days, getting them ready to commercialize and work together with other players in the fashion industry.
In April 2020, we proudly announced our new winners of the Global Change Award. Due to the global pandemic, we too had to make adjustments to make sure we support our winners in the best way possible.
From lab-grown cotton and creating fabrics from protein DNA, to tracking sustainable fibres by using blockchain technology, wastewater separation and converting carbon dioxide into sustainable polyester. These are the five winning innovations of the 2020 Global Change Award. Global Change Award, named the Nobel Prize of sustainable fashion, is the non-profit H&M Foundation’s fifth annual innovation challenge. Now, more than ever, H&M Foundation want to continue to support long-term development, innovation and entrepreneurship for a sustainable future. The goal is to identify early stage, disruptive ideas that can make fashion more sustainable, and to scale them to transform the entire fashion industry.
Orange Fiber won the first Global Change Award winner in 2016 with their innovation of creating textiles out of by-products from citrus juice production. Since then, the have made collections with for example Italian luxury brand Salvatore Ferragamo and H&M. Here, co-founder Enrica Arena shares the story behind the company and about winning Global Change Award.
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 and a cancelled Global Change Award ceremony, the H&M Foundation was left with hotel rooms in Stockholm, Sweden that could not be used. The rooms have now been given to people working in healthcare, fighting day and night to save the lives of people infected with COVID-19.
Nylon is popular in the fashion industry, not only for hosiery which may what first comes to mind, but also for blouses, dresses, tights, underwear, raincoats, swimwear and more. However, the making of nylon is all but sustainable. Until now.