The Swedish textile industry has experienced big changes since the early 70´s when an important part of the traditional ready-made apparel business gradually disappeared away from Sweden.
The stakeholders' will to be a part of and share their resources to actively develop the business has been above expected. Representatives from research institutes and universities have decided upon the best process, without prestige, which means that companies in the region get to be a part of a well-functioned and open research environment. This results in a stable and expansive growth.
VINNOVAS support and confidence in Smart Textiles through the Vinnväxt founding has contributed to the possibility of accelerating the process to form a dynamic innovation system, as well as to put the Sjuhärad region and Smart Textiles in focus.
Smart Textiles is an industry under strong international development. With an already solid base for development and production of technical textiles and an offensive interdisciplinary experimental textile and design research, the Sjuhärad region - with Borås as a centre - has a unique possibility to establish an internationally leading industrial cluster within the innovation system "Smart Textiles".
More than half of Sweden's textile industry, as well as the industry's main logistic points, can be reached within 45 minutes. You will also find entrepreneurial trade and logistics companies with old traditions that are willing to venture new technology. Smart Textile's collaborative partners can be found on an academic level; University of Borås (UB) and SP The Swedish Technical Research Institute among others. Swerea IVF and Chalmers University of Technology have established new research about the industry.
The regional support is very strong and public actors are a part of the innovation system. They are important in the work to create synergism effects outside the Sjuhärad region.
In a comparison with a European perspective, the Swedish textile production is characterised of products with high knowledge content and refining value. We have a very strong base in our knowledge base within the range from traditional textile to advanced technical textiles.