Jean-Claude Biver wins Red Dot: Personality Prize for revitalising the watchmaking industry

Jean-Claude Biver is one of the most successful managers in the watchmaking industry, and this year he has earned a very special honour. As part of the Red Dot Award: Product Design, he will receive the Red Dot: Personality Prize, which is being awarded in 2020 for the first time. Born in Luxembourg and raised in Switzerland, Biver has had an unmatched lasting impact on the watchmaking industry through his innovative ideas and imaginative concepts. He provided the inspiration for overhauling brands like Blancpain, Hublot and TAG Heuer and thus succeeded in bringing the market for timepieces to a whole new level. Biver’s wonderful achievement will be recognised as part of the award ceremony in Essen on 22 June 2020. 

Jean-Claude Biver

Time for progress in the competition and the watchmaking industry
This year’s Red Dot Award: Product Design is centred around innovation. With the introduction of the two metacategories “Smart Products” and “Innovative Products”, the competition shifts the focus more toward new developments and their significance for improving quality of life. Consequently, from now on the Red Dot: Personality Prize will be awarded to a creative leader who has succeeded in initiating major change and using opportunities to create something new. 

Jean-Claude Biver is the living embodiment of this definition, having revitalised Swiss watchmaking and breathed new life into countless brands in recent years. The timepieces developed under his leadership won over the jury for the Red Dot Award: Product Design numerous times. For example, the luxury smartwatch with tourbillon module “TAG Heuer Connected Modular 45 Luxury Kit” received the top award in the competition, the Red Dot: Best of the Best, in 2018. “This is a watch designed with the future in mind”. That’s what the Red Dot Jury had to say about the modular design of the timepiece that features interchangeable lugs, strap and clasp.

Congratulations from Red Dot CEO
“I have a very personal relationship with the watchmaking industry: Timepieces fascinate me, which is why I have become a real collector. All the more reason why I am delighted to give the award to Jean-Claude in person as part of the Red Dot Gala. After the quartz crisis, he was one of the few to still believe in the mechanical wristwatch and thus provide the impetus for its comeback. With fervent energy, dedication and an exceptionally keen eye for promising opportunities, he succeeded in revolutionising the market for watches and developing brands that are unparalleled in their commitment to quality. My sincere congratulations on this unique accomplishment,” said Prof. Dr. Peter Zec, founder and CEO of the Red Dot Design Award, about the watchmaking expert. 

Icon and driver of the Swiss watchmaking industry
No other businessperson has helped to rejuvenate so many watch brands. Jean-Claude Biver’s success started in 1982 when he purchased the rights to the Blancpain brand, which at the time had been inactive for roughly 20 years. The company blossomed under his leadership and within just a few years became a serious competitor to the big names in the industry. In 1992, Biver sold Blancpain to what is now the Swatch Group and joined the company’s management team. In this new role, he assumed responsibility for marketing and product development for the Omega brand. 

Biver’s next big breakthrough was the launch of the “Big Bang” chronograph. The watch expert took over management of Hublot in 2003, and the company recorded rapid growth after the new model was presented at BaselWorld 2005. Thanks to his tireless passion and unique ideas, the company’s sales increased tenfold within four years from 25 million to 200 million Swiss francs. In 2008, the brand was sold to French luxury goods group LVMH.  

This marked the beginning of a whole new chapter in Biver’s career, which culminated in heading up the management of LVMH’s watchmaking business in 2014. Since then, he has been responsible for the Hublot, TAG Heuer and Zenith brands. In 2018, Biver announced that he would step back from operating activities on account of health issues. However, he retains links to the company as a non-executive president. Not only that, he leaves behind a legacy that is virtually unsurpassed in its brilliance: He succeeded in putting a total of five watch brands on the path to international success.

Award ceremony on 22 June 2020 in Essen
The Red Dot: Personality Prize will be bestowed on Jean-Claude Biver at the Red Dot Gala in Essen’s Aalto-Theater on 22 June 2020. His on-stage appearance will be one of the highlights of the evening. In addition, guests can look forward to the official celebration of the Red Dot: Design Team of the Year 2020 as well as the handing over of the trophies to the Red Dot: Best of the Best laureates. The evening will come to a close in the Red Dot Design Museum Essen, where all of the award-winning products will be on show.

Designers and manufacturers from all industries have until 14 February 2020 to register for the world’s most renowned design competition. For further information and to register, go to

THE JEC COMPOSITES INNOVATION AWARDS: Celebrating Excellence in Composites at Jec World 2020

JEC Innovation Awards celebrate the fruitful cooperation between players of the composite community. Started in 1996, the JEC Innovation Awards have, over the past 24 years, brought in 1,900 companies worldwide. 198 companies and 475 partners have been rewarded for the excellence of their composite innovations. The JEC Innovation Awards reward composites champions, based on criteria such as partner involvement in the value chain, technicality or commercial applications of innovations. Also, the JEC Innovation Awards have built strong partnerships in India with IRCEP, in China with CCE for more than 15 years.

An exciting time for the composites industry

“Innovation is an essential part of this industry – it’s how we invest in our future. The top priorities for players in the composites value chain include product solidity, safety, and durability. That is why the JEC Composites Innovation Awards are more than just an awards ceremony. They are meant to inspire all participants, the whole industry and shed light on the excellent work carried out by the prize winners,” said Franck GLOWACZ, Innovation Content Leader at JEC Group.

A cutting-edge selection process and a prestigious jury

After pre-selecting 33 finalists, the jury now has one month to select a winner in each category. The very high-caliber innovations created by talented professionals will then be recognized at the awards ceremony.

The international jury represents the entire composites value chain, includes:

•             Anurag BANSAL, Manager Global Business development, ACCIONA Construction S.A

•             Christophe BINETRUY, General Chairman & Professor, EC Nantes

•             Robert BUCHINGER, Business Development Advanced Industry Systems, Swarco

•             Chantal FUALDES, Head of Airframe Certification, Executive Expert Composite Airframes, Airbus

•             Karl-Heinz FULLER, Manager hybrid materials, concepts and AMG, Daimler

•             Sung HA, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Hanyang University

•             Deniz KORKMAZ, Ph.D. Composite Technologies Director, EMEA, Kordsa

•             Brian KRULL, Global Director of Innovation, Magna Exteriors

•             Yann PENFORNIS, Managing Director, Multiplast

•             Henry SHIN, Director – R&D Composites Innovation Centre, KCTech

•             Kiyoshi UZAWA, Professor/ Director (Ph.D.), Innovative Composite Centre

Finally, an online voting process will be held for each category to choose a second-place winner for the general public’s favorite innovations. The public is able to vote online with the following link: . Votes will be opened on February 1st.

The awards ceremony will take place during JEC World 2020 on Wednesday, March 4, at 5 pm, on the Agora stage (Hall 5).

JEC Group is the world’s leading company dedicated entirely to the development of information and business connections channels and platforms supporting the growth and promotion of the composite materials industry. Publisher of the JEC Composites Magazine – the industry’s reference magazine, JEC Group drives global innovation programs and organizes several events in the world, including JEC World (the foremost and world- leading international exhibition dedicated to composite materials and their applications), which takes place every March in Paris.

EDANA announces nominees for the INDEX™20 Awards

INDEX™20, the largest global meeting place for players in the nonwovens industry, will again feature the INDEX™ 20 Awards for “Excellence in the nonwovens and related industries” at the EDANA stand at 10 am Tuesday 31st March, the opening day of the exhibition.

Throughout the four day exhibition the nominated submissions will be displayed at The Nonwovens Innovation Lab, a new INDEX™ feature showcasing how invention and sustainability drive the industry forward.

Open to products commercially available by the 31st January 2020, and selected by a jury of experienced peers, EDANA’s INDEX™20 Awards are the highest accolade for the best examples of excellence in the industry, highlighting creativity and innovations from businesses of all sizes, and from all parts of the nonwovens supply chain.

Nominees for each of these, in alphabetic order, are as follows:

Nonwoven Roll Goods

  • Fa-Ma Jersey – Microfly™ – nanocham AG+
  • Jacob Holm – Sontara® Dual
  • Sandler – New ADL

Finished products made from, or incorporating nonwovens

  • Callaly – Tampliner®
  • Dupont De Nemours – Dupont™ Tychem® 2000 SFR
  • Hassan Group- Heatable Geosynthetic Material

Raw materials or components (e.g. fibre, binder, polymer, tape), of special relevance to the nonwovens industry and related converted products

  • Beaulieu Fibres International – UltraBond
  • Omya International – Omyafiber® 800 (Calcium Carbonate)
  • Pelsan – Biodegradable breathable film for hygiene & medical market

Innovation in machinery of special relevance to the nonwovens industry

  • CAMPEN Machinery – New patented airlaid beater forming technology
  • Dienes Werke für Maschinenteile – Depth Control Senso Plus (Led)
  • GDM – Expandable Welding Wheel

Achievement for the most original marketing campaign for a product made from, or incorporating nonwovens

  • Berry Global – J-Cloth® Plus Biodegradable Communication Campaign

Sustainable Product

  • Ahlstrom-Munksjö – Fiber+, Green Capsule oxygen barrier lid, Compostable k-cup filter
  • Beaulieu Flooring Solutions – Rewind – Forward thinking carpet
  • RKW – RKW HyJet® Crop Cover

Sustainable process or management practice

  • Fatersmart – Closing the loop on used absorbent hygiene products
  • Diaper Recycling – Pureflow8
  • TiHive™ – TULIPZ

For more information about the exhibition, or to register as a visitor, please visit the dedicated INDEX™20 website

INDEX™ Awards Ceremony

The winners will be presented with their specially commissioned bronze sculpture and a diploma at the Awards Ceremony, which will be attended by the media and is open to all exhibitors and visitors to the show.

An award and a work of art

Designed by world-famous Belgian sculptor, Olivier Strebelle, the stunning work of art is both beautiful and representative of the diversity of EDANA’s members and their products. Olivier Strebelle (1927-2018), a renowned artist by the age of 20, today has sculptures displayed in major cities across Europe, the United States and Asia.

DuPont™ Sorona® faux fur bags ISPO Textrend “Best Product”

DuPont™ Sorona® faux fur was awarded the ISPO Textrend “Best Product” in the Accelerated Eco category for the Fall/Winter 2021-22 season. As the apparel industry is increasingly pivoting away from the use of animal fur, this innovative product provides a thoughtful solution to fur with a luxurious, premium look and feel that designers can incorporate into their garments. Renee Henze, DuPont Biomaterials Global marketing director, and Hao Ding, DuPont Sorona Brand Channel manager for EMEA, were on-site at ISPO Munich to accept the award on January 26, 2020.

Sorona faux fur is made with 70 to 100 % bio-based Sorona polymer fibrrs, creating one of the first commercially available faux furs using plant-based ingredients. Current styles vary from classic mink to plush teddy-style fur, providing limitless solutions for fashion apparel — such as the inside lining of a jacket, or the trim on a collar — as well as footwear and accessories — including fur-lined shoes, earmuffs and more. The faux fur pushes the boundaries of sustainability in fashion, while providing consumers with an ethical option that is also better for the planet.

“Customers do not have to sacrifice form for function with Sorona faux fur,” Henze said. “Within the fashion industry, brands and several high-end designers are making commitments to abstain from the use of animal fur in their collections. Research indicates that the faux fur market is expected to grow 19 % worldwide by 2023. We are proud to accept this award recognizing the quality and versatility of a faux fur made with renewable plant-based ingredients.”

New Sorona faux fur is a long-lasting and luxurious fur alternative with an array of performance attributes including warmth, design flexibility and dyeability.

With exceptional softness and uncompromising durability, this natural feeling alternative to fur will not break down over time due to heat or UV rays. This can lengthen the life of the garment for multiple uses and when it is finally time to retire the garment, it can be mechanically recycled, rather than being directed to the landfill like spandex.

Best in translation: 28 students win the EU ʻJuvenes Translatoresʼ award

The European Commission has on January 30, 2020, announced the 28 winners of the European Commission’s Juvenes Translatores translation contest for secondary schools. This year’s topic was what young people can do to help shape the future of Europe. The European Commission’s translators selected the winners from among 3116 participants from schools across Europe.

Commissioner for Budget and Administration Johannes Hahn said: ‘My congratulations to the young people who took up the challenge and demonstrated their excellent language skills. Learning languages is key in today’s society — they open the door to more job opportunities and help people understand each other’s cultures and standpoints better. Multilingualism is a key feature of being European and translation is the concrete demonstration of this diversity.’

The best young translator from each EU country will now travel to Brussels to collect their award, and meet with their peers and the European Commission’s professional translators.

This year’s contest was the first one run completely online. It took place on 21 November 2019, simultaneously in all 740 participating schools, from Oulu in Finland to the island of São Jorge, Azores, Portugal.

The participants could choose to translate between any two of the EU’s official languages. Of the 552 language combinations available, 150 were used by the budding translators.

The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Translation has been organising the Juvenes Translatores (Latin for ‘young translators’) contest every year since 2007. Over the years, the contest has become a life-changing experience for many of its participants and winners. Some have decided to study translation at university, and some have joined the European Commission’s translation department as a trainee or full-time translator.


The goal of the Juvenes Translatores competition is to promote language learning in schools and give young people a taste of what it is like to be a translator. The competition is open to 17-year-old secondary school students and takes place at the same time in all selected schools across the EU.

Multilingualism, and therefore translation, have been an integral part of the EU since the Communities were first created in 1957. It was established in the very first Regulation adopted in 1958 (EEC Council: Regulation No 1). Since then, the number of official EU languages has grown from 4 to 24, as more countries joined the EU.

This year’s winners are: