The Innovation Hub’s OpenIX has launched a challenge with Gelvenor Textiles, a South African fabric engineering company, to identify innovative entrepreneurs for joint product and market development.
The challenge calls on SMMEs and research groups, preferably based in Gauteng, to submit innovative product or business ideas on how to commercially apply Gelvenor’s K27 textile technology.
K27 is a strong, water- and UV-resistant fabric that can repair itself when punctured. The fabric also has an extremely high strength to weight ratio, as well as shape memory.
OpenIX is a programme of The Innovation Hub, a subsidiary of the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency (GGDA).
Gelvenor Textiles has been driving innovation in the textile industry for over 50 years where all technologically engineered fabrics are developed, tested and manufactured in-house.
The challenge is being implemented in partnership with local innovation consultancy the Research Institute for Innovation and Sustainability.
Successful SMMEs will work closely with Gelvenor to develop new applications for the technology and market it through close collaboration. Solution providers based in Gauteng will also be eligible for proof of concept or pilot funding from The Innovation Hub to support the development of their product and business model.
The challenge deadline is 13 October 2016 and proposals should be submitted via the OpenIX web site. There will be a workshop on 16 September 2016 at The Innovation Hub in Tshwane to assist SMMEs with the development and submission of successful proposals to the challenge.