👀 ClimateHack Vol. 75: Africa's Climate Tech VC's

PLUS: Danish startup Again Bio secured $10M for their CO2-based chemicals.

Hi There,

The African ClimateTech investing scene has been making headlines lately:

  • Norrsken22 closed at $205M debut fund to bridge the gap from growth to late-stage investments in Africa.

  • Africa GoGreen Fund announced an interim close of $150M AUM to advance climate resilience in Africa.

  • Saviu Ventures just secured €12 million for startups, including climate techs, in Francophone Africa.

So this week we’re taking a closer look at 40+ regional and global investors who are betting big on African Climate startups.

In Today’s Edition;

🏭 Danish startup Again Bio secured $10M for their CO2-based chemicals.
🔥 Finlands Carbo Culture raised $18.3M for its scalable biochar carbon removal solution.
🧣 New-York based BioFluff raised $2.5M to create the world's first 100% plant-based and biodegradable fur.

Carbon x Climate

Image Credits: CarboCulture

🔥 Carbo Culture, based in Finland, raised $18.3 million Series A funding for its rapidly scalable biochar carbon removal solution. Its Carbolysis™ reactors convert waste biomass into stable biochar, locking away carbon generating renewable energy.. 

🏡 Singapore-based Climate Alpha secured $5 million seed funding, in a round led by Jungle Ventures, for its AI-based platform that helps real estate owners and investors to analyse the impact of climate change on their portfolios.

📊 Australian carbon accounting software startup Avarni raised $2.5 million in a funding round led by Main Sequence Ventures. Its AI-powered technology measures and reports on companies’ carbon emissions, and offers support in cutting back. 

🔎 Polish startup Envirly raised €1.3 million seed funding for its SaaS solution that supports organisations in ESG and carbon footprint management, marking one of the largest seed investments in ESG compliance products in Central and Eastern Europe to date.

🪨 Canadian carbon mineralisation company Arca secured a grant of CDN$1.25 million from the B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy. It will use the funds to support a pilot project for air-to-rock carbon mineralisation.

💨 New Belgian startup Sirona Technologies has launched as the country’s first climate tech startup using Direct Air Capture technology, and is led by a former Tesla engineer.

Construction x Climate

Image Credits: Vizcab

🏢 Lyon-based SaaS platform Vizcab raised €5 million in a Series A funding round led by KOMPAS VC. Its ​​data-driven solution calculates a LCA of buildings, aiding compliance with local environmental regulations and allowing stakeholders to develop net-zero building strategies and meet carbon budgets.

AgriFood x Climate

Image Credits: Matsmart

🛒 Swedish company Matsmart-Motatos raised €40 million in a funding round led by Circularity Capital. It tackles waste in the food supply chain by procuring and reselling overstock goods that traditional retailers don’t want, and has recirculated over 60,000 tonnes of food and consumer products since its inception in 2014.

🍅 Ryp Labs, based in Seattle, secured $8.1 million Series A funding to get its bio-inhibitor stickers, which extend the shelf life of fresh produce and help to reduce food waste, on more fruit and vegetables in US retail outlets.

💨 Finnish startup Solar Foods secured €8 million Series B funding as it works to commercialise its Solein protein, made out of thin air via a fermentation process. Solar Foods uses carbon dioxide and hydrogen instead of sugars to feed its microbes, and hopes to secure EU approval for its protein late next year.

🌾 Amini, based in Kenya, raised $4 million in a seed funding round led by Salesforce Ventures and the Female Founders Fund. It uses AI and space technologies to make data on Africa's environment accessible to farmers.

🌿 Berlin-based Quazy Foods secured €800,000 pre-seed funding to prepare for the pilot stage of its microalgae production. It is developing improved strains and processes designed to unleash the potential of microalgae as an efficient, healthy and sustainable source of protein.

🍄 Germany’s Kynda received a non-dilutive grant from the country’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture to support a project to produce mycelial protein more efficiently and at scale using its biomass fermentation platform and waste side streams. 

🇩🇪 The German government has apportioned €38 million from its 2024 federal budget for the promotion of alternative proteins, supporting a switch to plant-based agriculture, and opening a Proteins of the Future centre.

🇺🇸 The Biden administration announced investments worth $195.9 million into 185 agricultural producers and rural entrepreneurs to help boost the agricultural supply chain, expand markets for producers, and lower overall costs.

Chemicals x Climate

Image Credits: Again Bio

🏭 Danish startup Again Bio secured $10 million seed funding and announced the launch of its “groundbreaking” production site for CO2-based chemicals. A spinout of the Danish Technical University, it harnesses natural, gas-eating bacteria to convert waste carbon dioxide into a range of sustainable chemical products.

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Energy x Climate

Image Credits: Newheat

☀️ French startup Newheat raised €30 million to design, finance, build and operate its own heat generation plants produced from its proven solar thermal technologies.

💡 RED Horticulture, based in the Netherlands and France, secured $17 million Series A funding for its dynamic greenhouse lighting solution, which precisely activates plant photoreceptors and is controlled via its AI-powered proprietary platform, MyRED. 

📊 UK startup Modo Energy secured €13.6 million Series A funding, in a round led by MMC Ventures, to support expansion of its innovative SaaS platform specialising in data analytics for renewable energy assets. 

🔌 OVO Energy has acquired Bonnet, a British startup which aggregates the availability of 27,000 public EV chargers across the UK via an app. Full terms of the deal were not disclosed.

⚡️Cool: Ben James explains electrification in 20 seconds.

Transport x Climate

Image Credits: ZeroAvia

🛩 British hydrogen-electric aircraft engine developer ZeroAvia secured $116 million Series C funding to build zero-emission engines for commercial aircraft, with its first engine scheduled for completion by 2026.

🚲 Indian electric bike manufacturer EMotorad raised $20 million Series B funding to disrupt China’s market domination and expand its presence in global markets.

🏍 Velca, based in Spain, secured €5.3 million Series A funding. It manufactures 100% electric motorcycles and bicycles, and will use the funds to support its international expansion plans and launch new vehicles.

🚲 UK-based HumanForest raised an extra £5 million in its Series A funding round, bringing the round’s total to £17 million. The company launched in London two years ago and claims to now have half a million people using its rental e-bikes.

Materials x Climate

Image Credit: Osium AI

🔎 French startup Osium AI closed its seed funding round with $2.6 million from investors including Y Combinator, Singular, Kima Ventures, Collaborative Fund and Raise Phiture. It uses AI to support research and development in materials science, with a particular focus on sustainability and greener manufacturing processes.

🧣 BioFluff, a biomaterials startup based in New York and Paris, raised $2.5 million in a seed funding round led by Astanor Ventures. It is creating the world's first 100% plant-based and biodegradable fur to support the fashion industry to replace animal farming and plastic fur.

👜 New York-based TômTex raised $2.25 million seed funding, bringing its total raised to date to $4.15 million. It will use the funds to scale production of its sustainable leather alternative, which is made with raw chitosan, a biopolymer found in seafood shells and mushrooms.

🌽 University of Sheffield spinout Floreon secured £2 million Series A funding for its halogen-free bioplastics made from plants such as corn and sugarcane, which can be used for applications such as food packaging and agriculture.

📱 London-based Reboxed, a circular economy startup which embeds refurbished electronic ecommerce solutions to brands to help tackle e-waste, raised £1.6 million to expand its operations.

♻️ The US Environmental Protection Agency announced $2 billion in funding for waste reduction projects to support a circular economy, including composting, recycling, and household hazardous waste reduction.

Funds x Climate

Image Credits: Twelve Below

🇺🇸 New York-based VC Twelve Below secured $108 million across two new funds, with which it will support pre-seed and seed-stage startups in the fintech, healthcare, energy, SMB and consumer sectors.

🇫🇮 New Finnish VC Failup Ventures secured €30 million at the first closing of its new early-stage fund, which will back “strong, mission-driven teams” with typical initial investments ranging from €200,000 to €1 million.

🇨🇮 Saviu Ventures, a VC firm which targets startups in Francophone Africa, secured €12 million at the first closing of its second fund, with which it aims to support fintechs, health-techs and climate-techs, while slowing down on e-mobility, e-commerce and e-logistics.

🇺🇸 53 Stations announced its flagship $190 million Fund I to support early-stage startups across the US. To date, it has invested in seven companies across five industries, including Whisper Aero, which is developing advanced propulsion technologies that create cleaner, quieter, and more efficient thrust solutions for flight and air movement applications.

🇻🇳 FEBE Ventures launched a second fund, targeting $75 million to support pre-seed and seed-stage companies across different geographies and sectors, including B2B, healthcare, and climate tech.

Trends x Climate: Long duration energy storage

⚡️ The Brief;
- The What: LDES - aka long-duration energy storage - essentially does what it says on the tin, stores energy for an extended time. LDES solutions are spanning a range of technologies - from novel batteries to gravity-based storage and compressed air.
- The Why: Our ageing electric grids are now the weakest link in the transition to a greener economy. These legacy systems are unable to transport higher volumes of energy and were not designed to handle the volatility in supply that comes with renewable energy generation.
- The Stats: Long-duration energy storage could cut industrial emissions by 65% according to the Long Duration Energy Storage Council. And McKinsey predicts that LDES deployment could save between 1.5 to 2.3 gigatons of CO2 equivalent per year by 2040.

🤔 Who; There are 19 companies globally working on long duration energy storage, including
- Canada's Hydrostor, which have raised $300M to dave for its Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) technology, a method they hope will enable the transition to a cleaner, more reliable electricity grid.
- USA's Form Energy who have raised $808M to develop a low-cost battery technology that can store wind and solar energy for extended periods of time.

💡 Learn more; Deep dive into the world of long duration energy storage and the 19 companies working in this space, along with expert insights from Tove Larsson at Norrsken and Felix Winkler at White Star Capital in our latest climate deep dive.

Memes x Climate

❓ Always choose the mystery box.

p.s. check out the recent ClimateHack Meetups that happened in Paris and New York, or join the next edition in Zurich on the 11th December.

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Editorial by Arman, Curation by Nicola