Portuguese start-up creates technology that reduces waste in the textile industry

Smartex.Ai distinguished yesterday with the Born from Knowledge (BfK) Awards, awarded by the National Innovation Agency (ANI), within the scope of the Altice International Innovation Awards (AIIA)

The solution developed by three alumni from the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto (FEUP) allows direct savings (in materials and production), which generate a return on investment in less than a year.

Smartex.Ai, a Portuguese start-up founded by three alumni from the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Porto, has developed a technology that allows, through the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), to detect imperfections in the production of fabrics, avoiding products with defects. In this way, the technology allows for the reduction of material and production costs, in addition to presenting significant environmental gains. Winner of this year’s Web Summit Pitch Award, the company was distinguished yesterday by ANI with the BfK Awards within the scope of the Altice International Innovation Award, an innovation award from Altice Portugal.

With funding from some of the main textile producers globally, Smartex.Ai expects to close the year with 1.2 million euros in order books coming from Portugal, Italy and Turkey, hoping to expand to China in the near future.

The AI ​​algorithm used by the Smartex.Ai solution guarantees defects traceability close to 100%. This solution thus makes it possible to avoid waste by detecting these imperfections at an early stage in the production chain. In this way, the start-up guarantees a return on investment in less than a year, in addition to savings of more than 2 million tons of water, 166,320 kWh of energy and 41,338 kg of CO2 emissions.

Smartex.Ai has been demonstrating that the solution it developed has obvious advantages over the competition. By allowing not only the reduction of material and production costs in an industry with a huge tradition in Portugal, which has been, moreover, an example of the country’s capacity for innovation but also significant environmental gains, this start-up is a success story that we will hear a lot about in the coming years. It is, therefore, a fair winner of the BfK Awards”, says João Borga, administrator of ANI.

The Altice International Innovation Award, the biggest monetary prize currently awarded in Portugal, in the area of ​​technological innovation. Launched in 2016, with the aim of reinforcing Portugal’s position in the development of innovation, the AIIA has already received more than 380 applications, representing a total prize of more than €365,000.

About Born from Knowledge (BfK)
Since 2017, ANI has awarded 41 projects and start-ups born from academic research in competitions and national innovation awards promoted by entities such as APDC – Portuguese Association for the Development of Communications, Agricultural Credit, COTEC, BPI and Altice Labs, through the BfK program.

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