💸 ClimateHack Vol 24: Angels x Climate

PLUS: $23M in funding for a payment card that plants trees

Hey There,

We're officially into the last month of 2022. Whatever your goals were at the beginning of the quarter, you now have 29 days left to achieve them. 

In this weeks edition:

💰 Climate makes up 25% of all 2022 venture investments.🌳 $23M in funding for a payment card that plants trees. 🙋‍♀️ A list of 200+ active angels in Food/Climate

Digest x Climate

📈 What’s up? New research from PwC shows that climate technologies and solutions now represent more than 25% of all venture investments so far in 2022.

📉 What’s down? UK battery startup Britishvolt has abandoned plans to build an additional battery cell factory in Canada, citing “worsening global economic conditions” and the “very significant reduction available investment capital”.

Carbon x Climate 

🌳 UK fintech TreeCard raised $23 million Series A funding to plant trees when customers make payments with its wooden debit cards, and already has a 250,000 customer waiting list.

💨 US-based Carbon Reform secured $3 million seed funding in a round led by Azolla Ventures. Its Carbon Capsule® system can be retrofitted into existing HVAC infrastructure to remove and capture CO2 from the air, providing energy savings and indoor air quality improvement. 

🐄 Santander UK is collaborating with Cambridge-based Levidian to deploy its LOOP device across its offices. LOOP is a rapid decarbonisation device that strips carbon from methane using a patented low temperature, low pressure process to create green fuel.

Food x Climate

🍫 Mars, Inc. has patented a packaged heat-resistant chocolate that it says maintains its taste, mouthfeel and shape during transportation and handling in hot climates

🔎 Agrology closed a seed funding round led by one of North America’s largest climate tech funds, Active Impact Investments, for its predictive agricultural platform that helps farmers monitor crops and receive predictive insights to maintain yields.

🍻 Suntory Group announced a new initiative to produce barley with 50% lower greenhouse gas emissions within five years, through regenerative farming practices.

🌾 Researchers at the John Innes Centre in Norwich, UK have made a discovery that could lead to wheat varieties that are more resistant to drought, thanks to a height-reducing gene Rht13 that allows seeds to be planted deeper in the soil, giving them more access to moisture.

🥖 The baguette has been selected by UNESCO to join its Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Energy x Climate

🔋 Finland-based Cactos, which makes smart energy storage units, raised €2.5 million in a combination of equity and debt funding to more than double its factory size in early 2023.

💰 Five energy projects across the UK are set to receive more than £32m in government funding from the Longer Duration Energy Storage competition. One of them is Sunamp, which has been awarded £9.25 million to develop and trial its thermal storage system in 100 homes across the nation, to tackle periods of low renewables generation on the grid.

🌡 University of Oxford spinout EcoSync secured £964,603 for its artificial intelligence-controlled property energy management system, which monitors building temperatures and makes changes based on occupancy levels to bring down energy use.

⚡️ Finnish startup Synergi raised €800,000 to help households cope in the energy crisis with simpler tools that make electricity consumption smarter and more flexible..

🏭 The Renault Group is joining forces with French utility company Engie SA on the development of a geothermal energy project that centers around taking hot water from a depth of 4,000 meters to supply heat to an old production plant.

Transport x Climate

🏡 Colorado-based Scythe Robotics has developed an autonomous electric mower that can run for 8 to 11 hours at a time, depending on the grass length.

🚲 Belgian startup Classified Cycling raised €22 million in a round led by Active Partners. Its tech is designed to “shake up the cycling industry”, and it now plans to expand into the growing e-bike market. 

🚎 UK bus and coach operator Stagecoach is planning to increase its electric bus fleet by 86% in the next year, and is continuing to target a zero emission UK bus fleet by 2035.

🚛 Swedish heavy EV and truck autonomy startup Einride is partnering with AB InBev to supply the booze giant with six of its low-carbon electric, connected freight trucks to carry renowned alcoholic beverage brands like Budweiser and Beck's.

Funds x Climate

🚜 The African Development Fund approved a $27.9 million grant to Ghana to support the development of agricultural value chains in the Savannah region, increasing the climate-resilient production of maize, rice and soybean, supporting the poultry value chain and generating employment for women and young people.

🇦🇺 The Australian federal government has begun the formation of its flagship $15 billion manufacturing fund, to support tech areas including medical science, renewables and low-emission technologies.

🇨🇦 Canada’s Ivey Foundation, one of the country’s largest and oldest philanthropic organisations, is distributing its entire endowment of $100 million to ‘align the economy with net-zero emissions targets’ and transform industrial policies to meet climate goals.

🇬🇧 Nesta Impact Investments announced a £50 million investment strategy to back early-stage impact startups in the UK working within childcare, health and sustainability.

Resources x Climate: Angels in Food/Climate 🛠

This week our team put together a list of 200+ active angel investors across Food (and Climate)

We've seen first hand how valuable Angels can be on a startups journey, from opening doors to changing the momentum of a round. 

Let's meet a few of the angels below, and feel free to share this list with founders currently or soon to be raising rounds.

🇬🇧 Lian Michelson (UK) - Investor, entrepreneur and experienced CEO 

Lian brings her first-hand knowledge of building technology businesses, managing teams, and running operations and logistics. She is currently working with startups, accelerators and VC funds as an investor, mentor and advisor and interested in computational biology to increase yields, and cell ag in the seafood space. 

“Impact angels are supporting your company not just for financial returns. They believe the more your company scales the more impact you create, so they are accessible and are here for the long run.“

🇸🇪 Daniel Skaven Ruben (Sweden) - FoodTech operator, advisor and editor of FoodTech Weekly 

Daniel is interested in innovations and technologies that can help make the food system sustainable and nourishing. These include fossil-free fertilizer, agriculture automation, CRISPR, personalised nutrition, food waste reduction solutions, sustainable packaging, and compelling alternatives to animal-sourced foods.

“Many early-stage startups share similar needs, e.g. fundraising, press, PR, marketing, recruitment, and go-to-market strategy. I can often add value in these areas.“

🇺🇸 Beatriz Franco (USA) - former lawyer, banker and agtech startup CEO

Beatriz sees opportunities in three main areas: technologies solving for scalability of fermentation and cell-based alternatives; hybrid solutions offering better tasting and more affordable food products and food waste upcycling startups to create food innovations and next generation packaging and materials.

🇦🇹 Markus Linder (Austria) - entrepreneur and impact investor

Markus is focusing on globally scalable business models with impact on the biodiversity and climate crisis. He is currently the Founder & CEO of tech startup inoqo. In 2019 he became active as an angel investor and mentor for several emerging global start-ups and has made 6 investments across agrifoodtech and biotech.

🇭🇰 Sonalie Figueiras (Hong Kong) - a sustainability expert, food futurist and eco-powerhouse. 

Sonalie is the go to alt-protien and materials expert. In the AgriFood space, she is currently most interested in diverted waste sidestreams, alternative and climate-resilient crop innovation (alternatives to fat, cacao, coffee and wheat) and the role of education in the future of food (content, engagement and information).

“I think angels that are on your side can make your company fly! They often are the most passionate, helpful and time committed of all your investors. All startups need 1 or 2 super supportive angels.“

🇩🇪 Daniel MacGowan (Germany) - startup founder, active angel investor, and ex-lawyer

Besides investing capital, Daniel brings with him first-hand operational experience of building and exiting his first company Otto’s Burger, and his own continued learning from founding and scaling up FoodTech startup Kynda.

He has a portfolio of 20+ startups with enabling technologies and infrastructure within the alternative protein space including Plantish, Tandem Repeat, Forsea and Nowadays. 

p.s. all the angels mentioned above also invest via HackCapital - if you want to start investing in the future of Food / Climate as an Angel - apply to join here.

🧬 Memes x Climate: 

Let's settle this debate once and for all.

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Thanks for reading and wherever you are in the world, have a great weekend ahead.

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Curated by Nicola & Arman