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Essity, a hygiene and health company, announced that it will expand its partnership with Silicon Valley’s Plug and Play, a startup accelerator and open innovation platform that connects startup companies with corporations for business development and investment opportunities.

Essity joined Plug and Play’s Health & Wellness innovation platform last year to gain access to the company’s global ecosystem of startups, focusing on technologies that would strengthen Essity’s feminine care and baby care products. The relationship has now expanded to include professional hygiene and incontinence products.

“Improving hygiene and well-being is essential to creating a more sustainable world and to value creation,” said Georg Schmundt-Thomas, President Essity Global Hygiene Category. “We’ve launched many patented innovations that millions of people use every day and that are winning in the marketplace. By teaming up with Plug and Play, we will strengthen our opportunities to get access to startups with the right competencies, thus enabling us to accelerate future growth.”

Essity has been a pioneer in enabling new innovations in hygiene products. Essity’s Tork brand, the global professional hygiene category leader, is revolutionizing the facility cleaning industry with the award-winning Tork EasyCube, a facility management software for data-driven cleaning. This software provides facility managers and cleaners with real-time information on cleaning needs so they can eliminate unnecessary work and invest more time where it is most needed.

Essity’s TENA Identifi was the first incontinence product designed to electronically track a patient’s voiding patterns over a 72 hour time period. The device provides staff in assisted care facilities access to a new level of knowledge that helps optimize individualized continence care by ensuring that the right products are being used, enhancing quality of life for residents.

“Corporations must embrace innovation. Essity’s commitment to collaborate with startups amplifies the dedication they have to customer and consumer satisfaction and the improvement of the health and wellness industry,” says Saeed Amidi, Founder & CEO of Plug and Play. “We look forward to exploring their new focus areas and finding them the best startups in the space.”

Plug and Play’s Health & Wellness platform runs two 12-week programs per year, accepting 20 startups in each round. These startups, sourced specifically for the partners in the program, are connected with corporations and investors for mentorship, funding and business development opportunities.