The Remarkable Story of Entrepreneur Francesc Jiménez

  • Infinite Athletic, co-founded by textile industrial engineer Francesc Jiménez, creates its sportswear by recycling racket strings for the first time.
  • In January 2022, he was mistakenly shot by a hunter, leaving him paraplegic. "You can't live with anger. I have accepted my situation, but my dream is to stand up again," he says.

A everyday situation as the seed of a great idea. Francesc Jiménez, a 44-year-old textile industrial engineer, can attest to this.

“I went to buy a shirt to play tennis and asked if they had any sustainable options. They said no. I saw the manager stringing a racket and asked, ‘Doesn’t anyone recycle this?’ No. As a result, I called many stores and clubs and always got the same answer: ‘No.’ We realized that the strings are made of high-quality 100% polyester that no one was recycling. We spent a year and a half researching until we managed to recycle it and create a thread for making sportswear,” recalls Jiménez.

With the conviction that there is another way to do things, we began to create a technical clothing brand for the world of tennis, in which we are not only the first in the world to recover this discarded material and give it a second life, but we also design all our garments with the idea that the end of their useful life will be the beginning of another new garment indefinitely," emphasize Jiménez and his partners, hence the name of their brand: Infinite Athletic.

Francesc Jiménez, François Devy, Isaac Nogués, Òscar Correas, and Paula Quelart form the core team of Infinite Athletic, a company based in the Tecnocampus of Mataró and supported by a textile investment group for the viability of the project. Involved in various sustainability initiatives, the Trofeo Godó hosted a presentation by these entrepreneurs.

"We spent a year and a half researching until we managed to recycle the used strings and obtain a thread to make sportswear."

Francesc Jiménez, Co-founder of Infinite Athletic

They have a wide network for collecting used strings – 10 tons annually, which could soon multiply thanks to another major commercial agreement – and several physical or online sales points, such as their website: "We have had a very good reception from people and stores," explains Jiménez.

Francesc's inspiring story is underscored by the vitality of this engineer who experienced a true tragedy in January 2022. While cycling in the mountains of Argentona, a hunter inexplicably mistook him for a wild boar and left him paralyzed.

"He was a 72-year-old man with vision problems. He heard a noise, thought I was a wild boar, aimed, shot, pierced through my back, and left me with a spinal cord injury from the chest down. I was dressed in yellow and white, quite visible," recalls Francesc, who spent 21 days in the ICU, the first 10 teetering between life and death.


Jiménez spent seven months hospitalized and just three weeks ago finished rehabilitation at the Guttmann Institute. The hunting drive was legal, but obviously poorly marked and dangerous due to the proximity of people. Pending trial, Francesc has advocated for stricter legislation before the Catalan Parliament to prevent further accidents like his, such as banning hunting on weekends and school holidays, "when more people go to enjoy the mountains and do sports."

"We have asked for very clear demarcation of hunting areas. It is incomprehensible that in any cycling race there are police officers and everything is signposted, and you don't see those measures in a hunting drive, with 20 or 30 hunters and firearms inside," warns Francesc. "Accidents happen and you have to take it as it comes; you can't live with anger either," comments Francesc, alongside Cristina, parents of Cesc and Ona.

"You can't live with anger. I have accepted what has happened to me, but my dream is to stand up again. In Switzerland, there are some groundbreaking advances with technological chips."

Francesc Jiménez, Co-founder of Infinite Athletic

"In the end, you do everything for them. I have bad days, but I try to move forward, there's no other option. I have accepted my situation, but my dream is to stand up and walk again. This faith in medicine helping me achieve that is also the motivation for my daily life. I am mentally strong to try to overcome this," he explains.

In that regard, Jiménez mentions some "very groundbreaking" advancements in Switzerland. "They have invented technological chips that have managed to lift nine patients with a type of paraplegia like mine from their wheelchairs. They started walking in a very rudimentary way, with a walker. It was a very groundbreaking thing, it was published last December. My hope is that these people receive funding and can continue researching. It would be fantastic," concludes Francesc.

Written by Lluís Carles Pérez in Mundo Deportivo