Sky piles into new £100m climate tech fund
Media giant Sky will anchor a new £100m venture capital fund looking to pump cash into early-stage ‘climate tech’ firms, the firm announced today.
Planet Fund, which will be managed by venture capital outfit Founders Factory, has been earmarked for firms tackling issues across decarbonisation, resource preservation, climate resilience and the circular economy.
Sky’s group chief marketing, corporate affairs and people officer Debbie Klein said today the firm would now be on the hunt for businesses that accelerate “cleaner, safer future and more sustainable behaviours”.
“We look forward to the impact that this new fund will have for early-stage climate tech entrepreneurs,” she said in a statement.
The moves comes as the latest in a spate of climate commitments from Sky, after the media giant launched Sky Ocean Ventures in 2018. Sky Ocean and the 25 startups it has invested in will now be absorbed into, Sky said today.
Founders Factory Executive Chairman, Brent Hoberman CBE, will serve on an advisory panel for the new Planet Fund including chairman Sir Ian Cheshire, alongside prominent climate scientists Professor Richard Templer and Professor Cameron Hepburn.
Henry Lane Fox, boss of Founders Factory, said that the firm felt “compelled” to build this fund both by the urgency of the problem and the scale of the opportunity.
“We’ve seen a huge migration of tech talent wanting to work in the climate, and know there is a gap to provide high-conviction capital and hands-on support to the next generation of ambitious planet focused companies,” he added.
“We’re excited to have Sky, one of Europe’s leading voices on climate, as our first partner.”
The new fund comes after climate tech investment has ballooned in recent years as tech firms spring up around the drive towards net zero.
Data from investment analysis firm Pitchbook this week found that funding has held up in 2022 so far despite shocks to the venture capital market, with global climate tech startups raised $13.7bn in VC investment across 369 deals.