Nottingham, the UK-based Worn Again Technologies, a textile recycling innovator, announced on Friday, October 7, that it has secured £27.6M (approximately €31.4M) in funding from existing partners and primary stakeholders.
The company says it will use the funds to construct a textile recycling demonstration plant in Winterthur, Switzerland. The capital will also be deployed towards the company’s expansion and its setup, contributing to the commercialisation of a highly effective solution to reduce textile waste.
To date, the company has raised a total of £42.9M in funding.
Worn Again counts industrial stalwarts Sulzer, Oerlikon, and fashion retailer H&M as key strategic investors.
Erik Koep, CEO at Worn Again Technologies, says, “We are extremely happy with the results of this funding round, which was our most successful so far. As such, it demonstrates the strength and growing interest in our textile recycling framework. As a result, we are well-positioned to enter the next phase of our business growth, as we can get closer to offering large-scale commercial facilities for blended polycotton materials.”
Current textile recycling methods turn less than 1 per cent of non-reusable materials back into new textiles while the demand for resources grows. In addition, plastics use is also increasing, and current recycling methods cannot meet market demand for high quality materials.
Worn Again Technologies: What you need to know
Founded in 2005 by Cyndi Rhoades, Adam Walker, and Nick Ryan, Worn Again Technologies was born from a vision to eradicate textile waste and create a world where resources are kept in constant circulation.
The company has developed a unique polymer recycling process to separate and recapture polyester and cotton from non-reusable products (textiles, PET bottles, and packaging).
With this technology, the company aims to address the challenging issue of converting polyester and polycotton blended textiles and PET plastic at their end of use.
The process allows these materials to go back into manufacturing, moving from a linear supply chain to a circular system, while providing long-term sustainable resource security.
Torsten Wintergerste, Division President of Sulzer Chemtech and Chairman of Worn Again Technologies, says, “We strongly believe in Worn Again Technologies’ mission and are firmly committed to ensuring its success. This is why we have provided support through investments as well as with our leading polymer processing expertise and infrastructures. We have a close connection to the demonstration plant, which is being built near our headquarters in Winterthur, and we are keen to see it operating as soon as possible.”
Georg Stausberg, CEO of Oerlikon Polymer Processing Solutions Division, says, “The time for circular strategies and their enabling technologies is now. This is why cutting-edge projects, such as Worn Again Technologies’ demonstration plant, are valuable and advancing at pace alongside current market trends and demands. We are excited to support this start-up in its next steps, driving the creation of a collaborative, circular economy for textiles.”