Over the past 10 years the Freshwater-based firm has put sustainability at the core of everything it does. From humble beginnings in a spare bedroom, the business has grown rapidly and is now based in a former supermarket in the West Wight.
In recognition for the Teemill element of the business, Rapanui has been awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation – an award which will be presented to the Drake-Knight brothers at Buckingham Palace later this year.
Teemill’s pioneering tech is the first time circularity has been designed into every stage of the manufacturing process. By using modern technologies like AI to maximise the efficiency of the supply chain, products made by Teemill are printed in a renewable energy-powered factory in real time – seconds after they are ordered. There is no unsold stock.
Teemill hopes that circularity will lead to rapid change in the fashion industry.
Martin Drake-Knight, Co-Founder of Rapanui, has said:
“The team has been recognised for what has been the culmination of 10 years work, to redesign the way the fashion industry works as part of our mission to make it truly sustainable. Through better design and conscientious application of technology, we’ve applied circular economy principles at every stage of the product life cycle and by powering our factory with renewable energy, we’re making waste a thing of the past”.
“Slowing down fast fashion won’t fix it, but when we took material people normally throw away at the end and make new products from it at the start, it changed everything. What is needed is the technology to make the reverse logistics of fashion possible and economical. That’s exactly what we’ve done.”