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  Updated: 01/11/2019

COSME Call for Proposals: Accelerate and scale up innovation applications for a sustainable and circular fashion industry

The general objective of this action is to enhance the competitiveness and improve the environmental performance of European fashion industry by building capacity and supporting small businesses (SMEs, designers and start-ups). This is with the aim to become more sustainable and turn their business model into a more circular one.

The specific objectives of the action are threefold:

  • Facilitate cross-border/transnational cooperation to support the transfer of knowledge and best practice on sustainable/circular fashion
  • Organise capacity building and support activities for SMEs, designers and start-ups in the fashion industry willing to become more sustainable and turn their business model into a circular one
  • Provide technical and financial support to SMEs, designers and start-ups to enable the scaling-up of innovative applications, products, processes and ideas for sustainable and circular fashion

The specific aim of the action is to put in place transnational and cross-sectoral support schemes to build capacity for sustainable growth for small businesses in the fashion sector.

This will be achieved through the following means:

  • Putting in place 4 transnational and cross-sectoral support schemes (Consortia) to build capacity for sustainable growth for small businesses in the fashion sector
  • Each of the 4 Consortia will provide technical and financial support to at least 25/maximum 35 partnerships per project (financial support to third parties). At least one member of each partnership will be an SME, a designer or a start-up (SME or micro-company or self-employed professional)
  • The financial support to partnerships (financial support to third parties) will range between EUR 10,000 up to EUR 15,000

Types of Activities

To achieve the general and specific objectives of the present call, a maximum of 4 selected transnational consortia will be selected. The selected consortia must set up a business support scheme (technical and financial) for SMEs, designers and start-ups in the fashion industry willing to become more sustainable and turn to a more circular business model. Each consortium will provide financial support to at least 25 and up to maximum 35 partnerships where at least one member is a SME or micro-company or self-employed professional.

The consortia must put in place a business support scheme that includes the following activities (A), (B) and (C):

A) Facilitate cross-border/transnational cooperation to support the transfer of knowledge and best practice on sustainable/circular fashion.

B) Organising capacity building and support activities for SMEs, designers and start-ups in the fashion industry willing to become more sustainable and turn their business model into a circular one.

C) Put in place a business support scheme to provide technical and financial support to SMEs, designers and start-ups to enable the scaling-up of innovative applications, products, processes or ideas for sustainable and circular fashion. This must be done in particular through:

  • Setting up and organising a selection/competition to identify at least 25 and up to maximum 35 most promising sustainable business ideas in fashion industry with high potential for innovation. The ideas must come from transnational partnerships from at least two COSME countries where at least one member is a SME, a designer or a start-up (SME or micro-company or self-employed professional).
  • Providing technical support and ad hoc mentoring programme for the selected transnational partnerships for the implementation of the most promising sustainable business ideas in fashion industry.
  • Providing direct financial support through lump sum to the selected transnational partnerships with most promising sustainable business ideas in fashion industry to be used for developing proofs of concept and prototypes of new products and services, developing and testing new business models, developing collaboration to test more sustainable/recycled material, supporting participation in trade shows or other showcase events.
  • Promoting the most successful sustainable business ideas produced by the selected transnational partnerships.

Additional details are provided in the Call and in the Guidelines for Awarding Financial Support to Third Parties.

Eligibility of Applicants

Eligible applicants must be fully or partly public or private bodies; private bodies must be properly constituted and registered under national law.

Applicants must be legal entities forming a consortium, including (the list of type of entities is not exhaustive):

  • non-profit organisations (private or public)
  • public authorities (national, regional, local)
  • universities or educational institutions
  • international organisations
  • non-governmental organisations
  • European umbrella organisations
  • business support organisations
  • providers of sustainable solutions
  • recycling centres
  • research centres
  • profit making entities
  • providers of financial solutions

Only applications from legal entities established in the following countries are eligible:

  • EU Member States
  • countries participating in the COSME programme pursuant to Article 6 of the COSME Regulation

The consortia must be composed of at least (4) four legal entities, from at least (3) three different EU Member States and/or COSME participating countries. At least one member of the consortia must be an entity operating in more than two EU Member States.

Eligible Consortia

The consortium will provide technical and financial support to at least 25 and up to maximum 35 partnerships (third parties), where at least one member is a SME or micro-company or self-employed professional.

  • Each consortium will provide technical and financial support to at least 25/maximum 35 partnerships per project (financial support to third parties)
  • Partnerships (financial support to third parties) will include at least an SME, a designer or a start-up (SME or micro-company or self-employed professional)
  • The amount of the lump sum per partnership must be between EUR 10,000 and can go up to EUR 15,000 and will be determined in function of the design of the proposed business support scheme

Additional details are provided in the Call and in the Guidelines for Awarding Financial Support to Third Parties.

Submission of Proposals

The deadline for electronic submission is 17 December 2019, 17:00 hours (Brussels time).

The electronic submission reference for this call is COS-CIRCFASH-2019-3-02.

Please refer to the Guide for Applicants (listed below) before commencing the electronic submission.

The link to the submission system is available on the Funding and Tenders Portal. (Available for submissions as from 3 October)

For more details please consult regularly this web page.


Updated: 01/11/2019 / Hit: 1,913