A FOREST company has signed a deal with a Brazilian sportswear manufacturer to develop “next generation” clothing.

Versarien, which is based on the Longhope Business Park, is pioneering the use of graphene, a “wonder material”, one carbon atom thick with applications from clothing to concrete.

The firm has signed an agreement with BiaBrazil, a leading Brazilian sports and active wear manufacturer.

It will see the integration of Versarien’s trade-marked Graphene-Wear technology into a new range of women and men’s active wear garments.

The Graphene-Wear formula will enable wearers to keep cooler, increase moisture management and enable clothes to dry faster. 

The new kit is expected to be available in British shops by Spring next year.

The companies have been working together for the past 16 months, and there have been extensive trials with suppliers in Brazil.

Versarien has worked with the University of Gloucestershire to subject the new technology to extensive wearer trials.

Founder and chief executive of Versarien, Neill Ricketts, said: “We are hugely excited to be in partnership with BiaBrazil.

“Through our partnership we will be able to create garments that have been designed with comfort, style and design in mind, whilst also maintaining high levels of quality and performance with our Graphene-Wear technology.”

BiaBrazil chief executive Beatriz Dockhorn, said: “As an innovative sports and activewear brand, we provide clothing ranges that provide our wearers with garments that not only help them in their sports performance but also increase their self-confidence.

“Working with the Versarien team, we have designed a next-generation clothing range.

“We are excited about the next stage of our partnership as we look to production and delivery of our range to market.”

Mr Ricketts started the business is his garage and now employs 120 people.