The five startup winners announced during last week’s Postcode Lottery Green Challenge 2018 ceremony in the Netherlands will share €1 million.
Winning the €500k top prize was the Great Bubble Barrier, a ‘revolutionary air bubble curtain that combats the plastic soup in our oceans’. The air bubble screen is used on riverbeds and ‘catches plastic before it arrives at sea’.
Two early stage businesses striving to transform the textile industry, Reverse Resources and AlgiKnit, were also among the top five. AlgiKnit is a ‘New York based startup creating yarn derived from a seaweed called kelp’. While Estonia’s Reverse Resources is developing a ‘software platform to make textile waste visible, usable and traceable’. Both successfully completed the Fashion For Good Acceleration programme recently, an Amsterdam-based initiative that is turning the fashion industry green with the support of some of its biggest brands.
“I am glad to say that we have validated a strong business case to the factories in return of sharing their information online, instead of getting an extra cost from yet another reporting or auditing requirement from their buyers. I believe that secure real-time online data exchange is a key to a systemic shift in the industry towards sustainability. And I’m glad to see a high-level recognition to our project by getting this award but also from countries like Bangladesh and India,” said Ann Runnel, CEO and founder of Reverse Resources, which won €200k as runner up.
On receiving one of the €100k prizes, Tessa Callaghan, co-founder and Director of Innovations at AlgiKnit, added: “With this funding, we have the opportunity to bring our vision to market and transform the fashion ecosystem.”