Spain's publicity to local weather change helps Madrid-based VC, Seaya, shut €300M climate-tech fund

Based on a current Dealroom report on the Spanish tech ecosystem, the mixed enterprise worth of Spanish startups surpassed €100 billion in 2023. Within the newest affirmation of this upward pattern, Madrid-based VC fund Seaya has closed Seaya Andromeda, an ‘Article 9’ €300 million climate-tech fund primarily based out of Madrid.

Article 9 refers back to the EU’s Sustainable Finance Disclosures Regulation Act, which places the onus on funding corporations to make sure their investments have a optimistic impression on society or the setting. 

Seaya has been round for 12 years, primarily specializing in mission-driven startups in Europe and LatAm. The brand new ‘Andromeda’ fund will spend money on progress corporations which concentrate on vitality transition, decarbonization, sustainable meals worth chains, and the round economic system.

The agency stated the brand new local weather fund will deploy between €7M-€40M as a primary examine; will retain capital for follow-ons; and plans to make 25 investments by the tip of 2027. To this point, 5 investments have been constructed from the fund (see under).

Seaya itself was launched again in 2013 by former non-public fairness investor Beatriz González, who obtained into local weather and sustainable investing after backing a recycled clothes line. She beforehand labored for Morgan Stanley, Excel Companions and Darby Abroad Investments, within the US. After that she turned a director of Telefonica’s pension fund, main its different property program.

Beneath González, Seaya has invested in local weather tech corporations together with Biome Makers,, Crowdfarming, Descartes, RatedPower, Samara, and electrical automotive charging stations firm Wallbox (which went public on the New York Inventory Trade in 2021). 

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Over a name, I requested González if she thought there’s a explicit benefit in having a fund out of Spain tacking local weather tech, given the nation’s proximity to a few of the worst results of a altering local weather, similar to excessive warmth, drought, wildfires and storms.

“It’s query,” she stated. “If you concentrate on vitality transition and decarbonisation, coming from Southern Europe, notably Spain, we do see that we’re higher fitted to two causes. One is as a result of Southern Europe is having extra excessive warmth waves. So clearly, there’s way more social consciousness. However we additionally assume that we’ve aggressive benefits within the industries that we’re focusing on.

“We’ve been pioneers in renewable vitality so we’ve the expertise and we’ve the large corporations within the manufacturing of auto components. So we’ve an enormous industrial base. The identical with agriculture and actual property publicity. So we do imagine that we’ve the trade experience and expertise coming from Southern Europe, particularly, and Spain, that does give us a little bit of benefit.”

I additionally requested what sort of experience they’ve that may enable them to make deep-tech funding choices about local weather tech.

“Now we have a few engineers so we’ve that in-house experience, however in our LP community we’ve huge European Union banks like Santander which do challenge finance for vitality or factories. So gaining access to that data helps us do the due diligence and transfer a lot quicker.”

To date, Seaya has used that data to spend money on a number of related corporations. Spain-based augmented-reality talent coaching answer, Seabery, for instance, developed AR software program and {hardware} for coaching welders, which means they don’t want to make use of actual welding to coach, thus lowering carbon emissions by 95% per welding session.

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It has additionally invested in UK-based AI-powered waste administration startup Recycleye in February 2022, which builds robots to kind garbage for recycling. 

In San Francisco, the agency invested in Pachama, a climate-tech firm that makes use of knowledge to confirm the standard of carbon credit and allow the launch of recent carbon credit score initiatives. 

The information of the brand new fund follows different indicators of the Southern European funding renaissance. Solely final week Plus Companions launched in Barcelona aiming to drum up a $30M-$50M fund.

The annual “State of European Tech” report for 2023 additionally discovered Spain’s ecosystem to be in fourth place total and stated it had the highest variety of startup fundings final yr.