ImpactAlpha, May 5 — BlackRock and Singapore’s Temasek launched Decarbonization Partners last year with a combined $600 million commitment.
Its first investment: MycoWorks, a San Francisco-based company that makes animal-free leather using mycelium, an ingredient sourced from fungi, to meet growing demand from fashion brands for low-carbon leather handbags and footwear.
Decarbonization Partners is “looking to invest in companies that have proven technology and a capacity to scale — once provided with the right capital,” said Decarbonization Partners’ Meghan Sharp.
The fund invested in MycoWorks’ $125 million Series C round alongside Prime Movers Lab, DCVC and Mirabaud Lifestyle Impact & Innovation Fund and other investors. MycoWorks alt-leather produces one-tenth the emissions of animal leather, said Sharp.
Investors are pouring money into startups working on high quality, bio-based and animal-free materials that go beyond “pleather.”
VitroLabs of Milpitas, Calif. secured $46 million in Series A funding from investors, including Leonardo DiCaprio’s Regeneration.VC, to produce cell-cultivated leather this week.
New York-based TômTex last month raised $1.7 million in pre-seed funding last month to create biodegradable leather using shells and mushroom waste.