Sustainable startups raise millions in the STAND Up! access to finance investment competition


The Competition

Project partner Berytech (Lebanon) organized this closed competition in which six circular and sustainable textile startups were brought together with experts and investors to showcase their solutions and present their pitches.  The experts, some of whom were real investors, pretended to be ‘investors.’, and were given the same amount of fake money to invest in the startups, giving the latter the goal of securing the greatest number of investments. 

The event was a digitized experience that utilized a platform designed specifically for such events, simulating a virtual currency for the investors to use while touring the startups. This simulation of an actual investment competition allows startups to practice their pitches and receive feedback from experts while experiencing real-life investor pitch conditions with investors.

The participating start-ups

  • ClimberSpace: a small business that specializes in resoling services for climbing and outdoor shoes, that also designs and produces a variety of climbing and outdoor products and apparel.    
  • Vea: an upcycling brand of handbags, jewelry, accessories and home items, all made from used rubber innertubes from trucks and bicycle tires.
  • UWYTA: a startup working on upcycling chips and chocolate wraps into aprons, tote bags and pouches all while helping vulnerable women. 
  • Gael Ghattas: a startup working on giving bags, cameras, and musical instruments new life with bold, personalized, handcrafted straps. 
  • Grade A+: a startup working on upcycling sheep wool to produce construction insulation, blankets, and fertilizers. 
  • EN Designs: a startup working on offering products with multifunctional, modular, and versatile features by including functionality as a design aspect.

The winner

The winner, Grade A+, raised 4.6 million dollars, the highest of all participating startups.  Grade A+ is a startup working to upcycle sheep wool blankets after discovering their unique features: breathable, soft, elastic, and hypoallergenic. Learn more about this eco-innovative stratup in Lebanon.


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