In 2021, venture capital investors launched 64 new climate tech funds loaded with $37 billion of “dry powder.” Some are climate tech veterans, some are generalists, and others are new to the field. Do the newcomers bring differentiated theses and models that can help the climate tech ecosystem thrive?
Sarah Sclarsic is co-founder and Managing Director of Voyager, a women-led climate tech fund launched in April 2022 with $100M in capital. Voyager’s portfolio includes gigElev, which turns EVs into mobile power plants, and Remora, maker of carbon capture devices for semi-trucks.
Daria Saharova is founding partner of World Fund, Europe’s largest climate tech fund with $350M AUM, which broke cover in October 2021. It focuses on startups with potential to reduce emissions by at least 100 megatons of CO2e per year. Can it clear that bar leading a €128M investment in IQM Quantum Computers and seed-stage backing for space-based manufacturer Space Forge?
Dawn Lippert is founding partner of Earthshot Ventures, a spinout from Elemental Excelerator where she also serves as CEO. Launched in September 2021 now with a $93M fund and a team responsible for 25+ climate tech exits, perhaps Earthshot Venture can also strike gold—or preferably, greener metals. They’ve invested in mining exploration startup KoBold Metals and Lithium miner Lilac Solutions.
The panel will be moderated by Jon Shieber, chief editor and venture partner at Footprint Coalition, the venture fund co-founded by Robert Downey Jr. Shieber is a former senior editor at TechCrunch where he most recently covered climate tech.
How are these new VCs filling voids in climate tech and pushing its evolution?
Sarah Sclarsic is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Voyager, a venture firm investing in early stage companies focused on decarbonization. She has been building and investing in transformative technology companies since 2009. Prior to Voyager, she co-founded car-sharing firm Getaround and served as the founding business director of Modern Meadow, the world’s first company making biofabricated leather.
Recently awarded Best Female Investor by Bundesverband Deutsche Startups e.V (German Startup Awards), Daria Saharova builds on 20 years of experience in entrepreneurship and finance. Before initiating the World Fund, she built the first German-based proptech and energy tech VC. Daria is an expert advisor to the European Commission and maintains a close relationship with international tech thought leaders as co-founder of the think tank 1E9 Denkfabrik.
Dawn Lippert is Founder and CEO of Elemental Excelerator, a global climate technology investor and non-profit impact organization. Under Dawn’s leadership, Elemental has invested in more than 130 startups in the energy, mobility, water, circular economy, and agriculture sectors, and those companies have gone on to raise over $7 billion in follow-on funding to date. Dawn is also Founding Partner of Earthshot Ventures, a $93 million venture fund spun out of Elemental in 2021.
Jon Shieber is a venture partner and the editor in chief at Footprint Coalition. He was a senior editor at Techcrunch and previously worked as a senior reporter for Dow Jones & Co., covering venture capital and private equity investment in cleantech, climate tech, and energy from Los Angeles, New York and Shanghai.