Chloe Capital and Cornell University are helping climate tech innovators launch and advance solutions to the world’s climate crisis. The Diversity In ClimateTech program has selected five women-led climate tech companies to pitch and secure business deals during its recent business accelerator.
Chloe Capital empowers women to make change
The accelerator, which convened in Ithaca, NY, connected the women entrepreneurs with investors. Chloe Capital offered over $500,000 in investments to underrepresented female founders. These founders are projected to be leaders in the growing sustainable and clean technology industries.
“Something interesting we noticed when we were screening applicants for this program was the market trends. “The program applicants are raising more funds and generating more sales,” said Kathryn Cartini, Chloe Capital co-founder and partner. “These metrics indicate that diverse founders in the climate tech sector are being recognized by investors as, what we like to call, ‘high-quality deal flow’. Out of 300+ applicants that met the program criteria, the five finalists selected were ones that showed both experience and early success in the niche market where their solution is needed,” added Cartini.
Dorrit Lowsen, Co-founder of Change Finance, received a $250,000 investment. Change Finance produces performance-oriented investment products that seek to promote a more just and sustainable world.
Lowsen understands first-hand the pressure to quickly address climate and clean energy technologies. She was a member of the domestic energy and environmental policy committee in Beijing during the preparation for the Paris Climate Agreement. Lowsen shared, “We believe investing for good can profit people, planet, and investors–and that idea permeates our culture from the rigorous, rules-based methodology that underpins our investment products, to the intentionality we bring to our shareholder advocacy.”
Creating equal opportunity
Furthermore, SaLisa Berrien, Founder and CEO of COI Energy, received a $200,000 investment. Berrien has more than two decades of energy experience focused on energy efficiency, smart grid optimization, and big data analytics. She is “a climate tech professional that is passionate about leaving the space she occupies better than she found it”. Berrien explains that, “COI Energy is changing the face of energy with its digital energy management. This detects and eliminates energy waste in buildings and repurposes that waste for good. We use machine learning and artificial intelligence to predict energy behaviors and make corrections to avoid waste.”
Diversity In ClimateTech launched in early 2021. It recruits, educates, inspires and supports the growth of companies led by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and women founders on the forefront of climate tech innovation. Founders that are focusing on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, supporting the decarbonization of the economy and broadly reducing energy consumption were recruited to participate in the accelerator.
Elisa Miller-Out, co-founder and managing partner at Chloe Capital, explained, “Through the Diversity in ClimateTech program, we hope to create a more diverse and inclusive environment for women founders working in climate tech.
Fostering progress in the industry
Chloe Capital and Cornell University manage the Diversity in ClimateTech program. They receive support from New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). Through this partnership, founders at the idea or pre-seed stage also receive support for their companies. They are provided with an array of resources in New York’s clean energy ecosystem within the Southern Tier. These resources help them progress.
“The Diversity in ClimateTech business accelerator and fundraising program is helping to fuel the continued growth of the climatetech industry in New York’s Southern Tier,” said Katie MacDonald, NYSERDA’s Director, Technology to Market. “Congratulations to all of these companies that are bringing diverse entrepreneurial ideas to the region, where they can take advantage of New York State’s unmatched clean energy assets and infrastructure.”
About Chloe Capital
Chloe Capital is a venture capital firm that invests in women-led technology companies. It invests with a gender and diversity lens. The firm partners with universities, foundations and corporations to host programs that help catalyze fundraising efforts for underrepresented founders. This collaborative approach to early-stage investing is what makes the firm so unique. More than 15,000 people around the world have already joined Chloe Capital’s Movement to #InvestInWomen.
About Cornell’s Center for Regional Economic Advancement
Cornell’s Center for Regional Economic Advancement (CREA) fuels economic growth and diversity in Upstate New York through entrepreneurship and innovation. CREA focuses on making a measurable impact by supporting and managing a portfolio of over a dozen programs. Programs include Rev: Ithaca Startup Works, Rev’s Hardware Accelerators, Grow-NY, UNY I-Corps, Cleantech Hardware Scaleup and many Cornell-facing startup accelerators and fellowships.
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