H&M will work with Rondo to develop heat storage technologies in its supply chain. The retailer’s investment arm, H&M Group Ventures, is also investing an undisclosed sum in Rondo, joining the company’s strategic investor advisory board.

The partnership aims to develop “clean, affordable heat” that can power textile factories across the world.

Rondo claimed its heat batteries could be used to replace most fossil fuels in textile production, cutting the carbon footprint of clothing by almost two-thirds.

Rondo’s heat batteries use “cutting edge innovation” to convert the intermittent energy provided by renewable electricity into the continuous, high-temperature heat and power required by textile producers.

Working with H&M, the company will look to replace fossil fuels with clean heat and power using its battery technology. It also plans to use the investment from H&M to expand its international operations and develop storage projects.

John O’Donnell, founder and chief innovation officer at Rondo Energy, said: “Today, coal delivers most of the heat and most of the carbon pollution making fabrics, because it’s always been cheap and simple to burn. But the world is changing. Region by region around the world, wind and solar power are becoming cheaper than fossil fuels. At Rondo, we’ve created a simple, practical tool to harness those new energy sources.”

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In a statement shared on LinkedIn, H&M Group said: “This latest investment will support our ongoing work to decarbonise our supply chain. The next step is to explore how Rondo’s technology could be used in our supplier factories.”

The investment in Rondo will be H&M Group Venture’s first investment in decarbonisation technology.

H&M Group Venture’s investment manager Laura Coppen added: “The company’s thermal battery energy storage has the potential to help factories electrify, which is key to achieving our climate targets. We look forward to working closely with Rondo and the broader ecosystem in scaling decarb tech.”

In May 2024, Rondo announced the launch of southeast Asia’s first heat battery, which was installed in a cement plant, alongside green energy supplier SCG Cleanergy.

The news comes shortly after the Future Supplier Initiative launched its first collective financing model in Bangladesh with H&M Group, Gap Inc, Mango and Bestseller to support apparel suppliers with the move towards decarbonisation.

H&M Group, alongside global investor Vargas Holding, announced the launch of Syre, a new venture aiming to scale production textile-to-textile circular polyester.

Regenerative cotton collection

H&M also announced it has debuted a range of beachwear made using regenerative cotton.

The H&M collection comprises six pieces made from Regenerative Organic Certified cotton sourced from farms that avoid artificial pesticides, fertilisers and GMOs while focusing on animal welfare, soil restoration and farmers’ livelihoods.

The capsule collection which includes two maxi dresses, two kaftans, a coordinating top and a skirt, will be available online from 4 July.

Ann-Sofie Johansson, H&M’s head of womenswear design and creative advisor said: “Versatility and durability are key concerns for our design team, and they were determined to create the ultimate summer dress our customers will be reaching for year after year, in high-quality cotton that conforms to Regenerative Organic Certified standards.”