European Smart Textiles Accelerator aims to fund up to 40 smart textile innovators by 2022
PARIS, DECEMBER 18, 2019 — SmartX Europe, short for the European Smart Textiles Accelerator, has launched. The 3-year programme will support up to 40 smart textile projects with a remarkable total budget of €2.4 million (€60,000 per project) and one-year of free coaching to help SMEs monitor the development of their innovation and get the contacts they need. SmartX has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under grant agreement No. 824825.
SmartX intends to boost smart textiles innovation to develop an end-to-end smart textiles manufacturing value chain in Europe and help drive promising prototypes faster to market. The underlying long-term objective of the programme is to build a professional and sustainable community, bringing together previously dispersed SMEs and fostering greater interaction and collaboration within the European smart textile industry.
The acceleration platform is driven by a consortium of 13 European partners from the textile and technology industries, focused on manufacturing technology, microelectronics, data processing, and IoT. Their combined natural outreach exceeds 1,000 relevant SMEs. In an effort to prepare companies for the upcoming calls and share state-of-the-art knowledge, SmartX partners have started hosting workshops across Europe. SmartX has also developed an online collaboration platform for European smart textiles businesses and experts, with efficient tools to identify and contact partners and create a true community with top specialists.
“The world market for smart textiles and textile wearables has now entered a rapid growth phase. It should reach $3 billion by 2024.” says Lutz Walter, Secretary General of Textile ETP, The European Technology Platform for the Future of Textiles and Clothing, one of SmartX partners and the programme coordinator. “With a growth rate which is 80 times faster than the whole textile market, smart textiles are now acknowledged as a top priority by European textile industry and by EU research authorities.”
The first call for formal applications is now open. As a necessary first step before the formal project application, SmartX has opened a call for Expressions of Interest, intended for European SMEs and start-ups within the smart textile and related sectors. The submission deadline is February 15, 2020.
It should also be noted that the SmartX platform will remain in full operation after 2022, when the European Commission’s financial support is over, as it will become part of Textile ETP.
More information can be found in this video and on the SmartX website, which also lists upcoming events.
SmartX, the European Smart Textiles Accelerator, is an acceleration platform for innovative smart textile projects, driven by a cluster of thirteen European partners from the textile and technology industries. The 3-year programme will help support up to 40 individual projects with a total budget of €2.4 million. SmartX has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under grant agreement No. 824825.
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