Wet Leopard: the Keeni Vest

The Australian Business Award for New Product Innovation recognises new products and services that provide innovative solutions for new and existing market needs.

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The Wet Leopard company launched in November 2015, introducing a new innovation in women’s swimwear. The Keeni Vest is a hybrid top that combines an underwire bikini and sun vest built-in-one. The Keeni Vest was created principally for outdoor water-based activities and is the next generation of sun protection swimwear for women, offering a balanced mix of function and fashion.

The innovative design in the Keeni Vest was technically engineered and constructed to fuse an in-built underwire bra with a front zipper into a single garment, allowing women to have the bust support they need, rather than having to wear another garment under a rash vest.

Wet Leopard understood that in order to attract younger women and teenage girls to a sun-protection product, a high-end prestigious fashion garment would be required, complete with figure-hugging designs, tailored seams, luxurious fabric and beautiful prints. The Keeni Vest design required the coverage of a rash guard but had to have the style and function of a bikini. The final Keeni design exemplifies luxury swimwear, achieved through the choice of imported Italian Nylon Lycra, exclusive digital prints, smooth gloss Japanese zippers, tailored French seams, mesh panelling, piped edging and a comfortable sculptured fit.

The Keeni Vest has UPF50+ protection against the damaging effects of ultraviolet rays. It is also chlorine-resistant, salt-resistant, breathable, thermal, durable, fast drying and made from ultra-light material. The figure-hugging design and choice of fabric is designed to give a ‘second-skin fit’, whilst the bonded nylon lycra acts with a slight compression against the torso to smooth and flatten. The full front zipper provides easy access to get in and out of the Keeni Vest and can stop and stay fixed in any position.

The longer vest in the Keeni Vest range has more coverage, whilst the crop top still provides sun protection on back, shoulders, chest and mid torso. All Keeni Vests come with matching bikini bottoms and are packaged environmentally in a fabric draw string bag that protects and stores the swimwear. The Keeni Vests sizing offers an extra small, small or medium with the 4-way stretch fabric allowing for a perfect fit across multiple body shapes. Each of these sizes also has a choice of two bra cup sizes, ranging from B cup, C cup to D cups. The product is Australian owned, designed and made.

The Wet Leopard Keeni Vest has received overwhelming positive feedback upon launching the label. The Wet Leopard Keeni Vest is being recognised for New Product Innovation award in the Australian Business Awards 2016.

The Australian Business Awards are the regional chapter of an integrated, hierarchical leadership program conducted on a national and international level. Eligible organisations from each region are invited to participate in the international chapter of the program at The World Business Awards. Conducted annually and currently in the second year of its international launch, The World Business Awards seeks to engage with the world’s business, innovation and technology leaders through a global recognition and knowledge building initiative that is underpinned by the program’s established framework. The program engages with organisations worldwide to benchmark the full spectrum of their products, services and initiatives and to review their business performance. The cycle culminates in the recognition and celebration of organisations that implement world-class business initiatives and industry leading products and services on a prominent and far-reaching scale. All entries must be entered in the regional chapter where the organisation is based.

Organisational participation includes private companies, publicly listed companies, multinational subsidiaries, not-for-profit organisations, non-government organisations, educational institutions, franchise systems, partnerships, government departments, government agencies, local government and statutory bodies operating in Australia.

Initiatives can include but are not limited to projects, programs, processes, systems, technologies, developments, ventures and undertakings.

Entries are assessed utilising a robust and dynamic framework to ensure that the assessment process is pertinent and objective. The World Business Awards Framework (WBA Framework) is utilised as a structured model of assessment that enables the participating organisations to be benchmarked against world class performance standards. The Framework consists of specialised assessment modules pertaining to the evaluation criteria for each of the award categories. The criteria and sub-criteria provide a robust set of requirements that are used as the methodology for benchmarking and learning among the participating organisations.

Organisations that participate are provided with the unique opportunity to benchmark themselves against the top performers globally. The recipients are acknowledged for their achievements and recognised as the elite of their industry earning a place amongst a distinguished group by having their products, projects, initiatives, contributions and achievements recognised on a prominent and far-reaching scale. The program provides the ultimate platform for building knowledge, increasing brand awareness, equity, loyalty and retention through increased exposure, recognition and prestige. This establishes a valuable resource that can be used extensively to create opportunities for publicity, positive organisational profiling and heightened brand awareness within the respective industries both nationally and internationally.