June 2018 saw the very first Circular Economy Week in London bringing together businesses, academics and government to showcase and celebrate circularity in the capital. It was a week of activities, events and workshops, kicking off with Circular London’s Collaborative Action day conference where we heard about London’s circular progress so far and the vision for the future.
Advance London businesses were well represented: we heard pitches from Clean Conscience, Entocycle, Library of Things, Biohm, Tryotec and Skipping Rocks Lab, and Skyroom, Unpackaged, Restart and Feedback shared their visions for the future. There was a real buzz in the room as people discussed the potential of all these businesses and all sorts of connections were made during the networking sessions.
We also heard from SMEs who are currently working with corporate partners: Loop who are working with Clarion to salvage building materials, Plan Zheroes who collect surplus food from Borough Market and redistribute it to charities across the capital and Stuffstr who are working with John Lewis to allow customers to re-sell their purchases. It was inspiring to hear the successes they’ve seen so far and see real life examples of promising collaborations who are paving the way for others.
Advance London contributed to the week with two workshops. The first was in response to requests we’ve had from our SMEs: a ‘Compelling Communications’ workshop with expert guidance aimed at circular businesses on how to craft an effective pitch for customers and investors. We were pleased to see many of our long time members and also to have the opportunity to introduce so many new circular SMEs to the programme – you can see some of the photos below. Attendees went away with the tools they needed to craft a compelling pitch and we’re planning to hold another later in the year so make sure to sign up to the Advance London newsletter and be the first to hear about it.
The second workshop aimed to bridge the gap between material innovators and waste management. We invited SMEs who are designing and using innovative materials such as recycled plastics and bio-materials to join a discussion with waste management representatives to tackle the challenges involved in disposing of those products properly. We covered so much, it needs its own blog entry – coming soon!
In total, over 30 Advance London SMEs took part in the various activities during the week. And this doesn’t even touch on the independent events such as Biohm’s showcase event and Library of Things’ demo. You can read more about the week on the CE Week website here.