Diverse entrepreneurs unite to tackle climate issues with new venture fund

A new climate-focused venture capital fund called SNØCAP has entered the scene with million in funding to invest in startups. The unique approach of SNØCAP targets startups that develop innovative, environmentally friendly components used in the initial phases of the supply chain for manufacturing. The fund is set to target sectors like advanced materials, waste management, infrastructure, food production, and energy, supporting solutions for industries responsible for 1% or more of global carbon emissions. The goal is to make a substantial impact on reducing carbon emissions while also bringing financial returns.

The founding team behind SNØCAP brings a diverse range of expertise and experiences to the table. Co-founder Nate Salpeter, who manages Sweet Farm, has a background in sustainable agriculture, animal rescue, and mechanical engineering, with experience working with Bill Gates’ TerraPower nuclear company. Co-founder Jonathan Azoff boasts 20 years of experience as a computer engineer in Silicon Valley, with two previous startups acquired by major companies. Co-founder Shrina Kurani, a mechanical engineer with a background in working for NASA, an electric utility, and launching a water chemistry company, provides valuable insight into sustainability science and climate advocacy.

SNØCAP has already invested in two startups. The first investment went to Sparxell, a startup producing color pigments made from plant-derived cellulose, eliminating the need for plastics and mined materials. These pigments can be utilized in various consumer goods, paints, and building coatings to improve energy efficiency. The second investment was in RevivBio, a startup using artificial intelligence to discover and test proteins and enzymes that address environmental issues, like identifying an enzyme to treat PFAS pollutants. These investments illustrate the fund’s focus on early-stage companies with proven technologies outside of the lab setting.

Investing in physical technologies, as opposed to software, poses challenges like upfront manufacturing costs, scaling issues, and slower ROI. Nevertheless, SNØCAP’s portfolio companies can integrate their products into existing supply chains, reducing the need for new marketplaces or changes in consumer behavior. The fund plans to disburse its million fund over four years, supporting up to 20 startups with investments ranging from 0,000 to 0,000. Additionally, the team may offer assistance with grant writing, field trials, and academic partnerships to aid in the success of the startups.

The name SNØCAP signifies the shrinking snowpacks on mountains due to global warming, underlining the urgency of combating climate change through innovation and investment. Joining other climate-focused venture funds in the Pacific Northwest, like Breakthrough Energy Ventures, E8, Elemental Excelerator, and VertueLab, as well as climate investment funds from tech giants Microsoft and Amazon, SNØCAP focuses on funding startups with environmentally friendly technologies in the early stages of the supply chain. The ultimate goal is to have a significant impact on reducing global carbon emissions while ensuring financial returns for investors.

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