Innovation is set to be at the forefront of Ecobuild 2015 next March as it signs a new partnership with retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) to highlight innovative products and solutions from across the sustainable built environment.
Following overwhelming feedback from Ecobuild's visitor community that innovative new products and solutions are a key reason to attend the event, Ecobuild 2015 will incorporate a curated innovation exhibition around one of the arenas. As the industry puts pressure on new materials to drive innovation and rebuild the UK supply chain, Ecobuild will showcase the latest sustainable, low carbon building materials and technologies predicted to meet this need.
Fostering innovation at every level, Ecobuild's UK-GBC Dragons Den will return in 2015 showcasing companies pitching their new ideas and innovation to a panel of industry experts. For 2015 this will be elevated to a conference session held in one of the two arenas. In conjunction with the UK-GBC, Ecobuild will launch the search for the best innovations and the team of judges will whittle these down, to decide who will present live at Ecobuild.
M&S is also sponsoring the Innovative Product of the Year category in the inaugural Ecobuild Awards. Produced to celebrate innovation across the sustainable built environment, Ecobuild exhibitors can enter the following categories: Ecobuild Sustainability Personality of the Year; Ecobuild Sustainability Initiative of the Year; Ecobuild Innovative Product of the Year and Ecobuild Workplace and Wellbeing Initiative of the Year.
Looking forward and gazing boldly back, Ecobuild, with the support of M&S, will examine the barriers which have slowed innovation in the construction industry in the past and lay on a range of sessions to empower the industry to strip them away.
The M&S Property Group has recently launched 21 new commitments as part of Plan A 2020, including a 50 percent improvement in energy efficiency in all UK and Republic of Ireland M&S buildings by 2020, maintaining zero waste to landfill across their operations and construction, and embracing Building Information Modelling (BIM) ahead of 2016. M&S experts will share their journey and next steps with the 44,000+ attendees at Ecobuild, ranging from architects, specifiers and designers to housebuilders, contractors, energy managers and facilities managers.
Munish Datta, Head of Plan A & Facilities Management at M&S, said: "We want to redefine retail by identifying innovation and making our stores, operations and value chains as sustainable as possible. We are excited to share this thinking with the attendees of Ecobuild next March, and are delighted to be the innovation partner."
Alison Jackson, Group Director of Sustainability, Ecobuild said: "The Ecobuild team are thrilled to collaborate with M&S to identify leading-edge innovation showcased at Ecobuild which can lead to growth across the sustainable built environment."