Circular Leap Asia empowers apparel manufacturers across Asia to fast-track solutions towards a circular economy.

The challenge

Due to the explosive expansion of fast fashion, the average person today buys 60% more clothing items compared to in 2000. Apparel production has doubled between 2000 to 2014, and the industry is now the second most polluting industry in the world, generating shocking amounts of waste that tax environmental resources and threaten community health. Valuable apparel and material are sent to landfills or incinerators, as waste and recycling infrastructures struggle to cope.

The sector is increasingly aware of these issues. It recognises the potential of new technologies and business models that can ensure clothes, fabric and fibres are kept at their highest value during use, and re-enter the economy after use, never ending up as waste – in other words, a circular apparel value chain.

Leading brands and retailers have made ambitious commitments, and niche innovators are introducing disruptive technologies and business practices. Yet there exists a clear implementation gap when it comes to executing potential solutions. Implementing circular solutions will require a cohort of pioneering manufacturers who participate in the innovation process, and operationalise circular solutions at scale.

 

Our solution

We have designed Circular Leap Asia, an 18-month innovation programme that aims to increase the agency of apparel manufacturers in Asia to lead the adoption and scaling of circular solutions. 

We will work with pioneering manufacturers to:

  • Understand and prioritise tangible opportunities that the circular economy presents for the business
  • Facilitate a collaborative innovation process with a value chain partner (e.g. brand or retailer) to generate solutions for shared circular apparel challenges that no one company can tackle alone
  • Inspire and challenge existing mindsets of key decision makers and process owners within the business

Our goal is to connect manufacturers in Asia to global innovation ecosystems, deliver proof-of-concept pilots, and build a learning and support network of like-minded circular apparel pioneers in Asia.

 

Get involved

We are looking for two types of challenge partners:

(a) Apparel manufacturers who are leading adopters of sustainable solutions.

(b) Brands or retailers with the ambition to pioneer circular solutions, and recognise the need for deep partnerships with manufacturing networks to implement solutions.

Circular Leap Asia has received the generous support from the C&A Foundation, which has pledged to match-fund up to EUR 294,000 of the programme costs, significantly lowering the financial investment required of potential challenge partners.

 

For more information or to register your interest, get in touch with Jiehui Kia.

 

Current programme partners

Challenge Partner: Ramatex Group

Innovation Partner: Fashion for Good

Implementation Partner: PIE Strategy

Media Partner: Eco-Business.com

Supported by: C&A Foundation, Singapore Economic Development Board