Designed for impact

The Global Change Award is more than just an award. The winners split a 1 million euro grant and embarks on the one-year GCA Impact Accelerator created by H&M Foundation, Accenture, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and The Mills Fabrica. The programme is tailored to meet the needs of each team and help them develop and scale their innovations for impact.

The H&M Foundation, Accenture, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and The Mills Fabrica are working closely to help the GCA winners move from ideas to success. With six rounds now completed, we know the GCA Impact Accelerator has been immensely valuable to the winners.

“The GCA Impact Accelerator is one of the best in the fashion industry thanks to its comprehensive approach and focus on key capabilities required to successfully scale-up a business, ranging from funding, team building and culture, leadership, and fashion industry expert sessions.”

Amit Gautam, TextileGenesis, GCA winner 2020

If you win, we are ready to support you with the following:

Business & Technology Readiness

Josefine Olsson from Accenture at the accelerator week in New York.

Accenture offers GCA winners support with business and technology readiness, while also providing access to a large network of experts. The global professional services firm has extensive experience in bringing innovations to market at speed, and also helps our winners articulate their multidimensional value, which is particularly valuable for early-stage start-ups.

“Sustainability is the new digital – it will create the most powerful force of change in our generation, transforming how we live and work, and driving new value and growth.”

Josefine Olsson, Europe Lead Future Tech, Technology Strategy & Advisory at Accenture

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Innovation Readiness

Bootcamp week at KTH, Stockholm.

KTH Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), one of Europe’s leading technical and engineering universities, offers GCA winners science and technology legacy, a framework for innovation development and guidance in key commercialisation areas.

The university’s innovation department, KTH Innovation offers our winners vast experience in technology commercialisation and innovation development through well-packaged frameworks, workshops and guidance. KTH Innovation brings expertise in early stage innovation development and has supported over 3,000 ideas since its start in 2007 with help from their KTH Innovation Readiness Level™ model.

“We bring our experience of taking new technology to market and the tools, methods and processes we have developed to give new ideas the best possible start in life.”

Lykke Westgren, Business Development Coach at KTH Innovation

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Industry Access & Investor Readiness

The Mills by the Nan Fung Group, run revitalisation projects where old textile factories in Hong Kong and London are turned into experimental retail and innovation destinations. The Mills’ investment arm The Mills Fabrica bridge the gap between innovators and industry players through their incubator programme, impact fund and innovation spaces.

The Mills Fabrica will provide the winners with investment readiness and peer portfolio synergies as well as industry exposure, ecosystem network and collaboration opportunities.

“Beyond financial support, investors should also play an active role in support portfolio companies, provide strategic advisory and connections with the industry, while taking a thought-leadership position to empower stakeholders in integrating sustainable practices in their businesses and catalyse collaborations.”

Vanessa Cheung, founder of The Mills

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The H&M Foundation’s role

At global non-profit H&M Foundation, we use our strong fashion heritage to position winning teams within the industry ecosystem. As well as offering our winners a financial award – share of a grant financed by the H&M Foundation – we offer access to industry networks, visibility and recognition. We also help to provide connections to support winners with accelerated investor and industry readiness. Coaching and support is central to the GCA Impact Accelerator and winners receive valuable feedback on their pitches to ensure they are ready for the next step on their journey.

Please note that neither H&M Foundation nor H&M Group will take any shareholder equity or intellectual property rights in the innovations, as the idea is to benefit the entire industry.

The Alumni Network – a universe of brilliant minds

Winners of the Global Change Award learn a lot from each other and develop strong connections throughout our one-year GCA Impact Accelerator. At the end of our very first programme, the winners did not want to part company with each other nor the organisers, so the GCA alumni community was born. Each year this network of ambitious and motivated entrepreneurs has grown and today consists of more than 100 brilliant minds. The alumni exchange tips, connections and support each other, and also join in with parts of the GCA Impact Accelerator.

GCA Impact Accelerator week
Accelerator week in New York.

Our extended network – a true ecosystem

Along with our core partners Accenture, KTH and The Mills Fabrica, we collaborate with an everchanging ecosystem of partners and peers to build a strong accelerator programme. Our partners generously share their expertise and are an invaluable sounding board to the winners. They also offer industry access, mentorship and know-how to equip the winners with the best possible steppingstone to market realisation.

Some of them are:

  • Accenture Ventures
  • Adidas
  • Alante Capital
  • At One Ventures
  • CFDA
  • Closed Loop Partners
  • Crystal
  • David Roberts
  • EMA
  • EMF
  • Esquel
  • Fjord
  • Fjällräven
  • Ganni
  • H&M Group
  • Hirdaramani
  • Houdini
  • Idea Farm Ventures
  • IKEA
  • Kering
  • Material Impact
  • New York University
  • Novetex
  • Pangaia
  • Planet Tracker
  • Recharge Capital
  • Salvatore Ferragamo
  • Shahi
  • Singularity University
  • Tariq Fancy
  • Vector Angels
  • Zalando
  • Zero by Maria Cornejo