A part of the Portuguese Textile cluster and CITEVE, SmartX Europe – European Smart Textiles Accelerator, closed its first call for funding, rigorously selecting 35 eligible applications, of which two are Portuguese.
With a total budget of 2.4 million euro (amounting to 60 thousand euro per project) and a year of free coaching, the 3-year programme will help support up to 40 projects in the smart textiles scope.
“With a growing rate 80 times higher than the entire textile market, smart textiles are now considered a high priority for the European textile industry and the European Union”, shares Lutz Walter, secretary general of ETP, European Technology Platform for the Future of Textiles and Clothing, a partner of SmartX and coordinator of the project.
SmartX Europe was boosted by 13 European partners from the textile and technology industries, focusing on manufacturing technology, microelectronics, data processing and IoT (Internet of Things). The eligible applications were submitted by 54 SMEs from 15 EU countries and from the 16 countries associated with the European programme Horizon 2020, though Germany, Italy and Sweden took the lion’s share of the applications.
Most submissions are within the consumer health and protection fields, while the remaining are split between medical use, industrial, sports and well-being.
The selection criteria, by 12 experts of the SmartX Selection Committee, include the potential for business growth of the SMEs and startups, technical and operational excellence, innovative capacity, potential of market placement and impact in the manufacturing value chain.