Did you know that the production of clothes uses up to 4% of the world’s drinking water? That it takes the equivalent of 285 showers to make one pair of jeans? Yes, you read that right. Fashion production makes up 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions. According to the Guardian, the water consumed to grow India’s cotton exports in 2013 would be enough to supply 85% of the country’s 1.24 billion people with 100 liters of water every day for a year. Meanwhile, more than 100 million people in India do not have access to safe water!
And this is where Speetra Design Studio’s idea came from; it started as a way for Sara to give back to the community by making a positive impact through the fashion industry. Sara Dsouki is an award-winning architect and entrepreneur. She graduated from NDU with a Bachelor of Architecture, and is currently pursuing her specialization in Management, Sustainability & Green Business in Paris. She founded "Speetra Design Studio" in Lebanon and targeted the MENA Region, to later work on an expansion towards France and eventually Europe. Her passion is focused on pushing the boundaries of a cross-disciplinary approach to research, to work at the intersection of architecture, product, and fashion design with innovation and technology, in the purpose of redefining product creation by giving designers the space and tools needed to convert their physical process into a digital one, while contributing to their paths towards a greener and cost-effective industry.
Speetra has one very interesting path with MITEF Pan Arab as they applied twice for the Arab Startup Competition in 2019 and in 2021. This was an opportunity for the team to further develop their idea, business model, product, and market approach. As per Sara’s experience: “The rejection was an opportunity rather than an obstacle. Two years later, I reapplied with more confidence, I was excited to be shortlisted and to be invited to attend the bootcamp. This alone was a win for me, all I wanted was to be on the map and be part of the MITEF Pan Arab family and network. I attended the summit, with no expectations because for me, my pre-selection was enough.”
Within only 6 months of the competition, Speetra Design Studio made it to Paris Fashion week and New York Fashion week. Today, they’re the MENA Region’s first fully 3D Printed Couture; the only entity in the region to work under the vertical of Fashion Technology, and give classes/seminars under these verticals. Speetra also won the German Green Product Award of 2020, making it to Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, and CNN Style.
The team also handled the pandemic and successfully navigated through it by taking the opportunity of raising awareness on the importance of technology in manufacturing and leading businesses in a more green way.
As a result of all the hard work and commitment, the team is now based in Paris in the biggest tech hub in Europe “Station F” working on business development for the French and European markets. They are also looking forward to developing the platform and registering their patent.
Asked about advice Sara could give to innovators and entrepreneurs around the globe, she says: “Take action, don't give up, be flexible enough and don't be discouraged, being able to pivot is actually a strength point”.