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Latest News / Top Ten Innovators Awards: Spotlight on Unique Diamond, RI.INNOVA and Kaghaz Kay Karnamay

 

Bright paper recycling services, stone reclamation and agricultural pesticide solutions are three innovative businesses to have each won Merit awards of US $5,000 in the Shell LiveWIRE Top Ten Innovators awards programme.


Kaghaz Kay Karnamay (KKK) which was founded by Wajiha Tariq in 2010, and is based in Karachi, Pakistan, is a craft papermaking and recycling enterprise which repurposes waste to produce a diverse range of paper products. Since July 2015, the company has been a supplier to Shell's media partners in Pakistan, engaging Shell's key stakeholders and contributing to its environmental commitments.


Pakistan imports more than 70% of its paper pulp supply to meet the demands for pulp and paper, and KKK was formed to promote the recycling of used paper, waste craft, fabric rags, agricultural residue and plant fibres to help develop a hand papermaking and recycling industry that creates wealth for local economies and provides a source of cheap paper for the domestic market, and for developing countries.


Outlining the benefits of KKK's approach, Wajiha said, "Handmade paper production has low capital investment, thereby promoting local entrepreneurship. It generates more local employment, uses an environmentally sound technology, depletes less resources and causes less pollution than paper mills."KKK's production system preserves the heritage of traditional arts and crafts, and promotes the development of technical skills among local artisans. The use of non-wood raw materials results in the production of eco-friendly products of high strength and varied textures.”


Highlighting the economic and social benefits, Wajiha added, "Papermaking contributes greatly to income generating activities and ensures functional literacy for the women and young adults of the villages who have no jobs. KKK's hand papermaking initiative not only conserves environmental resources, but also helps in providing employment to people from the unskilled and marginalised strata of society.”


Wajiha continues to innovate and is looking to introduce a series of multifunctional paper clay ceramics and is experimenting with plantable paper.
Wajiha plans to invest her prize in developing a community papermaking studio where people can have access to the papermaking equipment, space and supplies that are currently not available in Pakistan. By providing access to such facilities, Wajiha hopes to enable even more people to learn about the possibilities of sustainable development through hand papermaking and its allied products.


RI.INNOVA from Atella, in southern Italy, was founded in 2014 by Alessandra Angiulli. The business produces and installs wallboards fronted with stone cladding made from calcarenite stone, a traditional Mediterranean material, not in common use, but still highly desirable for its aesthetic and technical qualities. Alessandra invented a manufacturing process to produce a product that would match the versatility of competitors and retain the desirability of the original material, with the added stone.


By using a patented process involving the application of calcarenite stone on wallboards, RI.INNOVA enables interior designers to create a wide variety of beautiful, decorative stone finishes, at a reasonable cost, within any building.


Outlining the importance of innovation within her business, Alessandra said, "Analysis of the target market performance and the innovativeness of the product with its manufacturing process, has brought excellent results in terms of profitability and customer satisfaction. Our tests on the market have identified potential areas of business expansion with an increase in turnover and the creation of new jobs.”


RI.INNOVA has already made an impact on both the local and national market, with an appreciation of the aesthetic quality and versatility of the product valued by professional clients and an increasing number of industry based customers including architects, engineers and interior designers.


Looking to the future, Alessandra said, "Our challenge over the next few years is to introduce a new wallboard to create a new product in line with trends in bio building. Other innovations will involve the use of 3D printing technology in creating new products.”
Alessandra plans to use her funding to improve her production process and promote the internationalisation of her company.


Unique Diamond LLC was founded in 2010 in Oman by Hadi Ali Al-Sarhani. The company provides a solution to challenges within the agricultural sector, including the increasing resistance of pests to traditional fumigation chemicals, and concerns over their effect on public health. The company is now Oman's sole distributor of ECO2FUME, an eco-friendly pest control fumigant and has grown to employ 10 staff, with further plans to diversify into caravan renting.


Speaking about the role innovation has played within his business, Hadi said, "Innovation has enabled the business to increase its turnover by 25%. It also enables us to employ experienced and skilled workers who contribute to the company's success.”
Hadi plans to invest his prize in developing his business further, including purchasing new company vehicles and on marketing.


Commenting on his award, Hadi said, "I am grateful to Shell LiveWIRE for supporting Unique Diamond's work. With Shell Intilaaqah, Omani entrepreneurs have found a partner who believes in their potential and pushes them to excel. This is a big motivating factor for me to do even better in my business and to inspire other young Omanis to consider setting up their own businesses.”


Congratulating Hadi on his award, Dr Ali Al Lawati, General Manager of External Relations at Shell Development Oman, said, "Hadi is a great example of how an innovative approach contributes to making a positive impact to business, and I congratulate him on his success.


"Innovative, wealth creating businesses are important drivers of economic growth and each of our ten award winners is having a positive impact in their respective business sectors. Shell is proud to support such innovative enterprises to grow and achieve long-term sustainability.”
 


 

Top Ten Innovators Awards: Spotlight on Unique Diamond, RI.INNOVA and Kaghaz Kay Karnamay
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