Clean Technology News

Attracting Capital to Cleantech
Published on: January 24, 2024

Impact investor Cycle Capital supports innovative, leading-edge companies that produce more with less, using fewer resources and turning those efficiencies into significant returns. We spoke with Shirley Speakman, Senior Partner, to learn more about the firm is attracting increasing amounts of capital to the cleantech sector.

Describe your core offering(s). How is your organization contributing to a cleaner, greener future? 

Our mission is to empower entrepreneurs, investors and companies to scale innovative solutions to the major ecological challenges facing humanity. 

We are financial entrepreneurs. We dream big and set our sights high, doing everything in our power to turn those dreams into reality. Along the way, we inspire our partners and collaborators to dream more, to dare more and to outdo themselves. 

We’re fully invested in a mission of capital importance. For us, excellence is intrinsic to who we are. We are genuine and fair partners. We respect our commitments and assume our responsibilities with honesty and transparency. Our relationships with partners and collaborators are founded on loyalty and solidarity, during times of hardship and in success. 

Other than coffee, what gets you out of bed in the morning? How does this work connect with your core beliefs and values?

What gets us up in the morning is our fundamental belief that what we do matters. A common belief that we have an existential challenge before us in climate that also represents one of those investment opportunities that comes along only once a generation. We pour our efforts into finding those companies that can truly and uniquely address climate with outstanding teams and a concrete path to a solution that will operate at scale.

Tell us about a recent win (or wins) or your organization.

Thankfully we can now say to the world “You can make money in climate tech.” We have exited three companies very successfully and have more coming down the pipe. That’s the win because that is what attracts increasing amounts of capital to this space.

What’s next for your firm? 

The next fund! Our successes have created a desire to continue to do what we do best. And give ourselves the opportunity to work with the next cohort of entrepreneurs and leaders investing in the next big winners.

Finally, what’s on your team’s wish list for Ontario’s cleantech sector?

Ontario has an enormous amount to offer – whether it’s one of the cleanest grids in in North America, a robust climate tech ecosystem, talent that provide global insights or some of the globally recognized academic institutions – the ingredients exist to take a leadership role in addressing the climate challenge and reaping the economic reward.  

What anyone who is building a business knows is that there are many elements to success that are outside your control; so any actions to improve predictability is instrumental to grabbing the lead. To that end, I am impressed by the policies that reduce uncertainties like contracts for difference and would love to see more work that helps create an environment of risk taking when addressing the climate challenge in front of us.

Photo by Noah Buscher on Unsplash