Finnova attends the SME Assembly in Prague with the European project CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster as an example of good practice

  • The European Commission has invited the Spanish-Belgian Finnova Foundation, partner of the project, to showcase in the capital of the Czech Republic this incubator that aims to transform companies in the fashion and textile industry into sustainable, circular and regenerative ones.

Juanma Revuelta, CEO of Finnova, has been invited by the European Commission to present the European project CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster, co-financed by the European Commission under the COSME programme, as an example of good practice in circular economy. The CircularInnoBooster project aims to transform textile and fashion companies into sustainable, circular and regenerative enterprises. With a duration of 2 years, it has a budget of 1,128,000 euros, 75% co-financed by the European Commission. The project is composed of an international consortium led by the European Institute of Design (IED), together with Texfor, Circulab, Finnova and The Circular Project with HumanNation.

To meet its objective, the CircularInnoBooster project has launched CirCoAX, an eight-month acceleration programme that provided 30 consortia (#CirCoAX30) from across the European Union committed to circularity with funding, training and further activities to develop their ideas. «This acceleration aims to turn these initiatives into projects funded by the EU through programmes such as LIFE, Interreg and Horizon, enabling public-private partnerships with local councils, county councils and regional governments. In addition, it will allow the creation of employment at a time when it is so necessary,» said Revuelta. «Less than half of used clothes are collected for reuse or recycling when they are no longer needed, and only 1% are recycled into new clothes. This generates 5.8 million tonnes of textiles per year in the EU, approximately 11 kg per person. But instead of seeing this as a problem, we should see it as an opportunity to generate new materials from this waste, which in turn creates new jobs and helps social integration around the world,» explained Revuelta at the Annual Assembly of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, the most important event for SMEs in the whole of Europe.

The fashion industry is currently the second most polluting industry in the world, a fact that has a clear impact on society and the planet, «as shown by what is happening in the Atacama Desert, where at least 39,000 tonnes of used clothes are stored. The positive thing we can take from this is that we now have the technology and solutions to turn the problem into new materials, energy sources and new jobs,» said Finnova’s CEO.

Scalable project

The European project CircularInnoBooster has many possibilities to be scalable both at European level with the Nextextilegeneration initiative, a platform that gives visibility to the 4 COSME projects that share the same objective of transforming fashion and textiles, and in Latin America with Adelante Ventana 2, an initiative that, together with the Chamber of Commerce of Bogotá and the Sustainable Fashion Cluster of Peru, aims to promote sustainability in the fashion sector for its internationalisation, through a programme of cooperation activities.

Now is the time to move forward with this type of project, with the funds available for the period 2022-2030, all within the framework of Next Generation, the world’s largest economic recovery programme,» Revuelta concluded.

CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster Startup Europe Awards

Over the past 8 months, the project has formed and funded 30 consortia (#CirCoAX30) in the European Union with its acceleration programme. In October, five circular and collaborative workshops called «Cocreathons» were organised based on the challenges of the sector as well as the EU Textile Strategic Plan. Thanks to these activities, CirCoAX30 and different entities explored future partnerships and projects, as well as new funding opportunities to make them a reality.

Next Thursday the 8th of December 2022, the final ceremony «CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster Startup Europe Awards» will take place in Brussels, an event that will recognise the collaborative and co-creative spirit of those projects developed in the Cocreathons. The aim of the event is to bring together public and private organisations working in the field of fashion and textiles committed to circularity. In addition, co-innovation and co-creation will be promoted to maximise positive impacts, opening a space for networking.

Since 2016, the Finnova Foundation has launched the Startup Europe Awards initiative promoted by DG CONNECT of the European Commission, which aims to identify the best projects aligned with the objectives of the SDGs in the European Union.

About CircularInnoBooster

is a project funded by the European Union’s Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Programme (COSME).

The CircularInnoBooster project aims to transform companies in the textile and fashion industry into sustainable, circular and regenerative enterprises. With a duration of 2 years, it has a budget of 1,128,000 euros, 75% co-financed by the European Commission. The project is composed of an international consortium led by the European Institute of Design (IED), together with Texfor, Circulab, Finnova and The Circular Project with HumanNation.


COSME is the Competitiveness of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises programme of the European Commission’s Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME).

Through this programme, assistance is provided to SMEs to help them develop their business models, access finance and internationalise. It also provides support to public administrations so that they can improve the business environment and facilitate economic growth in the European Union. During the 2014-2020 funding period, this programme earmarked €2.3 billion to support SMEs.

About IED

The Istituto Europeo di Design is an academic institution operating in the field of education, training and research in the disciplines of design, fashion, visual communication and management. IED has branches in Spain (Madrid and Barcelona), Italy (Milan, Rome and 5 other cities) and Brazil (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro). It operates in several EU and COSME countries through partnerships and agreements with institutions, business support organisations, teachers, experts and mentors. IED is based on a wide network of connections in the F&T (Fashion and Textile sector.).

About Finnova

Finnova is a foundation working for the promotion and development of innovation and entrepreneurship at EU level. Based in Brussels, it operates through collaborations and partnerships in all EU countries. Finnova’s expertise in leading European project communication and dissemination activities is combined with a strong proven track record in start-ups and business support programmes, such as accelerators, incubators and selection and award ceremonial events.

About Texfor

Texfor is the textile association of reference in Spain with 400 members. Founded in November 2010 and based in Catalonia, it brings together companies from the entire textile value chain, from yarns to fabrics through accessories, finishing processes, printing and dyeing for the garment industry, home textiles and technical/industrial applications. Texfor has specialisation and experience, having worked in important expert committees at EU level: university and vocational training, financial capacity building, transversal collaboration, promotion of RDI, specialised services and leadership in sustainability with a focus on the circular economy.

About Circulab

Circulab is a laboratory and business design studio specialising in the development of methodologies, tools and transformation programmes to help companies develop circular and sustainable business models. Circulab has designed a set of tools to implement the circular economy model in companies. It operates in more than 23 countries, 9 of them in the European Union, supporting projects through more than 60 independent business consultants, applying the circular methodology and tools.

About The Circular Project with HumanNation

TCP (The Circular Project) favours and promotes circular and sustainable fashion in different areas, offering the fashion industry a communication strategy based on a cross-cutting and systemic approach to the circular economy. TCP combines social, ethical, environmental and economic aspects, and has a strong presence and connections in the world of sustainable fashion.  TCP has promoted the Circular Sustainable Fashion Week in Madrid, a unique event of its kind, and also acts as the headquarters of the Spanish Association for Sustainability, Innovation and Circularity in the Fashion Industry. TCP is also an ambassador for Sannas (Triple Bottom Line Business Association) and has collaborated with a wide range of Spanish, European and Latin American institutions and companies. The Circular Project is working with Human Nation to co-design and develop CirCoAX. HumanNation is a consulting firm specialising in the development of innovation ecosystems and transformative and disruptive companies for the «new economy». It is based on the fourth economic sector, systems thinking and co-creation. It sensitises organisations and ecosystems to respect planetary boundaries and the social fabric, creating resilient local economies with a global perspective.

About Next Textile Generation Next Textile Generation aims to give visibility to and promote innovative ideas on sustainable practices in fashion and textiles. Through this platform, Finnova disseminates relevant information related to the industry with information on other European projects.

Countdown to CirCoAX Startup Europe Awards begins with the presentation of nominees

The #CirCoAX30 Startup Europe Awards 2022 ceremony