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[Funding alert] Greensphere Brings Together World’s Largest Group of Science Institutes to Launch £150 Million Fund

Greensphere brings together world's largest group of science institutes to launch £150 million fund tackling climate change and biodiversity loss.

Greensphere brings together world’s largest group of science institutes to launch £150 million fund tackling climate change and biodiversity loss.

Greensphere will raise a £150 million fund designed to invest in and scale world-leading businesses that successfully commercialise solutions that mitigate against the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss.

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Gaia Sciences Innovation brings together leading British partner institutions that are home to more than 4,000 scientists, researchers, and conservationists, including RBG Kew, ZSL, University of York, UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, and via the Anglia Innovation Partnership, the Earlham Institute, John Innes Centre, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Quadram Institute, The Sainsbury Laboratory, and the University of East Anglia.

Based across the UK with a particular focus in regional research hubs such as York and Norwich, the fund will invest into start-up, spin-out and scale-up businesses linked to these institutions, that can help tackle biodiversity loss and climate change.

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Divya Seshamani, Managing Partner of Greensphere Capital ,said: “In the face of the global climate and biodiversity crisis, we urgently need more investment into solutions based on the best available science. Mitigating these real risks requires evidence-led, science-based solutions, not anecdotes and spin. Britain is home to many of the world’s best bio and environmental science researchers, but the commercial potential in their breakthroughs is too often being overlooked. We want to unlock a pipeline of exciting ventures that are based on brilliant ideas, that operate with scientific integrity, that are grounded in a contextual understanding of the complex natural systems and are alert to the risks of unforeseen consequences.”

The fund will focus primarily on investments across three focus areas:

Greening real assets: making agriculture and forestry more sustainable and enhancing or restoring land and water-based ecosystems, with applications such as natural pest control, green fertiliser and products that enhance soil health, afforestation and habitat restoration advisory, enhanced carbon dioxide sequestration, and improved watershed management.

Green fintech: providing technology and expertise that can underpin and unlock green financial markets.

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Human supply-chain resilience: investing in solutions that improve the resilience of human supply chains (from food to medicine) and ease pressures on ecosystems or adapt to changing conditions, for example through climate-resilient food crops, developing alternatives that displace drivers of deforestation such as meat, dairy and palm oil, and using plants for drug discovery or producing bioactive compounds.

Professor Monique Simmonds, Deputy Director of Science at The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, commented: “Addressing biodiversity loss and climate change through science is at the heart of Kew’s mission. When we work with others, innovate and deliver science-based solutions, we know we will see change. It is now a question of pace. We are ready, we have the knowledge and the expertise, but it is the arrival of critical funding that will help us realise the solutions.”

Matthew Gould, Chief Executive at ZSL, commented: “This is a brilliant opportunity for us to expand our impact and scale ZSL innovation at the kind of speed the world needs. It means our scientists and conservationists will have access to experts and investors as they develop solutions for our planet.”

About Greensphere Capital

Greensphere Capital was founded in 2011 to invest in sustainable technology, companies and projects that help to mitigate the dual crises of climate change and biodiversity loss.

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As the first fund manager to the UK Government’s Green Investment Bank, a mandate it won in 2012 against 23 other British and European fund managers, it has grown green and sustainable businesses in some of the most challenging social and economic environments for over a decade over two successive funds.

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