2022 was a big year for SAGES and marked the first year that we have been able to work on the business without studying alongside. Over the second half of 2022, we both left the jobs we had been working at since graduating to focus full-time on SAGES and it’s safe to say that even with the business having both of our full attention there still don’t seem to be enough hours in the day!
We’ve got big plans for the coming year so we wanted to take a quick moment to reflect on 2022 and highlight some of our personal milestones.
-14th of February: Incorporation
We in officially incorporated on valentines day ! I would love to say it was done on purpose but it was a complete happy accident
-15th of June: UAL Creative Enterprise Awards
After entering numerous awards and always making it to the final but not quite winning, the UAL Enterprise Award is the first award we actually won! We pitched at an event at 180 Soho House and were awarded a prize package including funding, press, PR and mentorship support. A shout out goes to Frances at LCF Graduate Futures who encouraged us to apply for this and has helped us massively over the past two years.
-11th of July: Investment
SAGES received a whopping £127,000 of investment from SFC Capital. SFC is a leader in the UK's early stage investment world, providing seed capital and support to promising British start-ups. This Funding allowed us to proceed with research and development that is crucial for our dyes and continues to help us reach full commercialisation in accordance with our goals.
-22nd of October: Dutch Design Week
We were lucky enough to be invited to show our dyes at Dutch Design Week last year. This was our first major exhibit outside of the UK and we were featured at the Materialized exhibition organised by Isola Design District.
For such a simple display the design and organisation behind it was deceptively difficult! But it was worth it as we received press attention alongside potential collaborations. Read my article on our favourite Dutch Design Week innovations in materials and colouration our blog.
-8th of December: The Greenhouse Accelerator Demo Day
We were accepted onto the Greenhouse Accelerator after a pretty intense two day bootcamp in February last year and finished the year with our Demo Day pitch at The Royal Institution in December. We were lucky enough to win 2nd place in the audience vote and our prize plant Sophie is now happily living in our studio.
Pitching in this venue felt like an incredible achievement as some of the most highly-regarded scientific breakthroughs (such as the greenhouse effect and even the discovery of the first synthetic dye!) have been presented there.
-13th December: eBay Circular Fashion Fund
As a young start-up we are always hustling for more funding and mentorship. In December, we found out that we had won the Circular Innovators Fund alongside 5 other amazing businesses. This is presented by eBay and the British Fashion Council and we are looking forward to beginning our mentoring in the coming months.
Its 2022 was such a fulfilling year and we have so much more work to do this year so stay in touch and and stay updated as we continue to grow and please do share us and our achievements with friends and colleges !