Bridging innovation and creativity: University of Oregon partners with global eco-textile company

PORTLAND, Ore. Oct. 23, 2023 The University of Oregon – with a deep history in the areas of sports product development, athletic performance, and sustainability – is partnering with NTX, an international company that uses waterless dyeing and printing for textile production. NTX, along with its longtime global supply chain partner Luenthai, plans to open “NTX Bridge Innovation Lab in Partnership with the University of Oregon” next year.

Through this agreement, NTX will establish its first U.S. facility and locate it near the University of Oregon’s new Northeast Portland campus. UO students and faculty members will have access to the state-of-the-art facilities, prototype resources, and mentorship at the lab.

“Launching a partnership with NTX is an exciting opportunity and directly ties into our mission to provide a world-class education to our students,” said UO President Karl Scholz. “We strive for excellence in curiosity-driven scholarship, and to serve society — as a driver of ideas, innovation, and prosperity. Bridges Innovation Center adds another layer of opportunity for students and faculty in our distinctive sports product programs, and eventually in more areas across the university.”

NTX sees the partnership as a way to keep advancing its low-carbon technologies and processes by providing UO students the chance to dream big and explore a world of possibilities.

“Bridges isn’t just a hub of technology. It’s where creativity meets practical application,” said NTX Chairman and founder Kalvin Chung. “Here, students’ fresh ideas and researchers’ expertise combine, not just to imagine, but to forge real-world solutions in textile sustainability. It’s about impactful innovation, turning sustainable concepts into industry standards for a more responsible future.”

For the University of Oregon, this partnership underscores the success of academic programs like the Sports Product Management and Sports Product Design graduate programs at UO Portland. A cornerstone of both programs is the extensive connection to the regional hub of sports and outdoor companies.

“Our graduates are set up to be changemakers, leaders and entrepreneurs. This is possible by encouraging them to research, explore, and create using the latest technologies and processes in the industry,” said Jane Gordon, vice president for UO Portland. “The partnership with NTX takes those endeavors to a whole new level. What NTX does with low-carbon textile production and other technologies will allow students in these programs to be at the forefront of sustainable product and technology development.”

The Bridges Innovation Center may include:

  • NTX Cooltrans: A sustainable alternative for textile coloration that reduces environmental impact without compromising on performance or aesthetics.
  • NTX Eco-Denim: Denim production technology that significantly reduces water and chemical usage.
  • NTX AI: Optimizing textile production processes, ensuring efficacy, quality, and eco-friendliness through the power of artificial intelligence.

The possibilities for this partnership extend beyond the University of Oregon. By having NXT open their center near UO Portland, the entire region stands to benefit. The west coast is the center of the sports and outdoor industry, with more than 500 companies in the Pacific Northwest. Companies will be able to test and make updates to textiles more quickly.

About University of Oregon Portland 
The University of Oregon has been part of Portland for nearly 150 years and purchased the NE Portland campus in June 2022 as part of a generous gift by Connie and Steve Ballmer to establish The Ballmer Institute for Children’s Behavioral Health. The move to a new location – expected to be complete during academic year 2024-25 – is the next phase in the UO’s commitment to providing quality public higher education to the Portland region. From graduate professional programs that have launched generations of leaders to creating a new profession of children’s behavioral health specialists, the UO brings together research, innovation, and partnerships to directly impact and improve the livability of the region.

Media Contact:
Heidi Hiaasen
Portland Communications
University of Oregon

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