Smart textiles have in recent years started to move out of the research and prototyping stages and build a clear momentum of industry adoption across several promising end markets, offering very interesting opportunities for tackling societal and market challenges.
According to various studies the market for smart textiles and wearables is expected to enter an exponential growth phase, therefore they have the potential to create new products in many sectors and, more, the potential to re-invigorate traditional textile & clothing industries with new business models.
It’s time to link industrial manufacturing chains of materials, components and integrated systems in order to develop cross-disciplinary challenges able to offer new strategic market opportunities.
SmartX Accelerator will establish a portfolio of up to 40 Trailblazer Projects, which will pioneer one or more stages of the novel value chain with a specific focus on critical manufacturing steps. The funded projects will be coached along the entire process, from project generation to results exploitation, by clusters experts trained in the SmartX Coaching Approach. The coach activity will continue after the end of the SmartX project, focusing on IPR exploitation and go-to-market strategy.
SmartX system aims so to become the EU-wide recognized Business Angel for SME’s and start-up companies wishing to innovate in the smart textile market.
Small and medium-sized companies from across the EU and certain associated countries can apply for the funding through open calls.
In addition to the funding and coaching of innovation projects, SmartX will also develop a web-based collaboration platform. It will support smart textiles value chain building with a number of self-service and interactive tools, and will be an open match-making community where their members can meet, communicate and start collaborative activities during the SmartX project and beyond.
Address SME’s developing innovative smart textiles based products, processes and business models and establish new integrated value chains for development, manufacturing and marketing of innovative smart textile solutions, for 3 selected end markets, through:
- Development of new cross-sectoral industrial value chains for an emerging market
- Improvement of exploitation of the potential of clusters and combination of different competences and innovative solutions
- Implementation of capabilities and capacities, and improvement of innovation potential of SME’s to develop and produce internationally competitive goods and services
- Development and replication of a systemic approach to cross-sectoral SME innovation beyond SmartX
1) 3 sectors involved:
- Protective wear (professional and recreational)
- Industrial applications
- Healthcare and well-being
2) 40 trailblazer projects funded:
- TRL from 6 to 8 (4 might be considered)
- single or consortium of SME's and start-ups based in EU or associated countries
- specifically targeted at filling strategic gaps in the emerging cross-sectoral value chain of smart textiles
- 9-12 months of duration for each trailblazer project
3) 3 open calls
4) Maximum funding per project:
- A grant up to 60.000€ per company (SME), with the possibility to receive a voucher to get individual or collective customized multidisciplinary coaching services
8 clusters, 2 RTO’s and 3 Innovation support entities from 7 European Countries:
- Plate-forme Technologique Européenne pour le Future du Textile et de l’Habillement - ETP (Belgium) – Coordinator
- Centre Scientifique & Technique de l’Industrie Textile Belge – CENTEXBEL (Belgium)
- DSP VALLEY VZW – DSP (Flanders, Belgium)
- Centre d’Innovation des Technologies sans Contact – CITC-EURARFID (France)
- Institut Français de la Mode (France)
- Deutsche Institute fur Textil-und Faserforschung Denkendorf – DITF (Germany)
- STEINBEIS Innovation – SIG (Germany)
- Sourcebook (Germany)
- Po.in.Tex (Italy)
- Centro Tecnologico das Industrias Textil e do Vestuario de Portugal – CITEVE (Portugal)
- Confederación de la Industria Textil – TexFor (Spain)
- Smart Textiles Cluster at Hoegskolan I Borås (Sweden)
23 European organizations (industry associations, clusters, government departments, smart textile and technology innovators) support this project.