In 2019, UK start-up Ecologi had an idea: With subscription services all the rage, why not allow environmentally conscious consumers to subscribe to offset carbon emissions by funding environmental projects?
Let’s just say the idea took off.
Ecologi completed a seed investment round of $5.75 million (£4.05 million) in April. Their pre-money valuation was £16.5 million from lead investor General Catalyst, along with Entrée Capital. Now, Ecologi’s pre-money valuation is at £75 million. They also exceeded a £2 million crowdfunding target on Crowdcube.
Ecologi plans to use the money to expand in the US and EU. They also plan to use the funds towards product development.
Carbon offsets have grown in popularity over the past year as nations and businesses across the globe look for ways to reduce their carbon emissions. This is done by purchasing carbon credits. Each individual carbon credit is equivalent to one ton of carbon being removed from the atmosphere.
Though some have raised concerns over the role of carbon offsets in the fight against climate change, world leaders have voiced their support. Carbon offsets were a central discussion point during COP26, as nations agreed to standardize the offset process.
Some experts even believe the industry could reach $22 trillion by 2050.
According to Elliot Coad, Ecologi CEO and Co-founder, “Community ownership is at the heart of what we do and has been the driving force behind our growth over the last two years, so we felt it was only fitting that we offered our loyal subscribers the chance to own a stake in Ecologi. Since GC’s investment in April this year, we have spent the last three months turning down VC money in favour of a community-based crowdfund.”
Ecologi’s B-Corp certification is in process. Their ultimate goal is to plant one million trees every 10 days, reaching 1.7 billion trees by 2030.
As of now, subscribers through Ecologi have supported planting 26 million trees, offsetting 943,120 tons of carbon.