Centre approves ₹50 lakh grants each for 7 startups in technical textiles to boost innovation and sustainability

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In a move to boost innovation in textiles, the Centre on Thursday approved grants of 50 lakh each for seven startups in the technical textiles sector under the National Technical Textiles Mission (NTTM).

This initiative aims to promote innovation and sustainability while fostering transformative developments in the industry, the Ministry of Textiles said in a statement.

The ministry has set a target to support 150 startups to promote innovations in technical textiles. These seven are in addition to one that was approved earlier.

Mint on 4 June was the first to report that the textiles ministry planned to give grants of up to 50 lakh each to 150 startups that are engaged in making technical textiles and that the ministry will not seek any share of the profits from the business generated.

Also read: Centre to fund 150 startups with 50 lakh each for developing advanced technical textiles

Textiles ministry has relaxed royalty cap

Additionally, the textiles ministry has relaxed the royalty cap on this scheme. Generally, every fund provider takes a percentage of the profits that the startup earns as ‘royalty’, in return for their investment. This relaxation will make it easier for these start-ups to grow.

Proposals focusing on sustainability, composites, high-performance textiles, meditech, and smart textiles, driving significant advancements in these crucial areas, have been approved by the Empowered Programme Committee (EPC), chaired by Textiles Secretary Rachna Shah, the ministry stated in a statement.

The grants have been approved under the NTTM’s Grant for Research and Entrepreneurship across Aspiring Innovators in Technical Textiles (GREAT) scheme. This initiative aims to encourage young innovators, scientists, technologists, and startup ventures to transform their ideas into commercial technologies and products, thereby promoting self-reliance in India.

The approved startups include projects focused on developing and manufacturing braided composites for military applications, Radmone integrated IFF antennas, surgical simulation models made of composites for training doctors, and nano-fiber infused textiles for energy generation and sensing, it said.

These initiatives are expected to make significant contributions to technology-driven manufacturing in India, it said.

Also read: Centre to set up labs for testing marquee textiles meant for exports

Besides startup funding, the EPC has also approved a grant of 6.4 crore to IIT Guwahati. This funding will be utilised to introduce new subjects in technical textiles and enhance the laboratory infrastructure in the institute’s Civil Engineering Department.

NTTM was launched in 2020 with the aim to position India as a global leader in technical textiles by promoting research, innovation, and the use of technical textiles in various sectors.

“The synthetics eco-system in India needs a big boost in both textile and apparel. Technical textiles are one part of the synthetics eco system, so the government recognises this gap,” said Rahul Ahluwalia, co-founder of the Foundation for Economic Development.

“Start ups have a role to play, but the government will also need to focus on big investors that can bring scale to synthetics,” Ahluwalia said.

As per a KPMG report, the Indian technical textiles market is the 5th largest in the world and stood at $21.95 billion in 2021-22, with production amounting to $19.49 billion and imports $2.46 billion. In the past five years, this market has grown at 8-10% per annum and the government aims to accelerate this to 15-20% over the next five years.

The global technical textiles market was estimated at $212 billion in 2022 and is expected to reach $274 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 5.2% during 2022-27, driven by increasing demand cross industries and the rapid development of new applicative products, according to the KPMG report.

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Published: 13 Jun 2024, 09:07 PM IST

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