- Funds raised will further enable Newlight to expand the production of AirCarbon; investors include GenZero, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures, and Charter Next Generation
CALIFORNIA – 3 August 2023 – Newlight Technologies, Inc., a leader in decarbonisation technology using natural microorganisms to convert greenhouse gas into high-performance AirCarbon-based materials, today announced the completion of an equity investment round led by GenZero totaling US$125 million.
The funding round includes participation by GenZero, a Temasek-owned decarbonisation-focused investment platform company, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures (OLCV), a subsidiary of Occidental (Oxy) focused on advancing low-carbon technologies and business solutions, Charter Next Generation (CNG), North America’s leading producer of specialty films, and a global luxury goods manufacturer, as well as other new and existing shareholders.
In addition to financial participation, Newlight has completed development agreements with CNG to commercialise specialty films decarbonised with AirCarbon and with OLCV to use direct air capture (DAC) systems to develop carbon dioxide feedstock for AirCarbon production plants.
Newlight is currently delivering AirCarbon-based products and materials to over 5,000 locations across the world, including to customers and partners in the fashion, entertainment, foodservice, hotel, and automotive industries. This investment will enable Newlight to expand its AirCarbon manufacturing platform towards the company’s goal of using greenhouse gas as a resource to manufacture decarbonised materials at global scale.
“This capital round represents an inflection point for Newlight, where we have the opportunity to build on 20 years of research, development, and commercialisation, and expand biological decarbonisation at large scale,” said Mark Herrema, CEO of Newlight. “It is an important milestone for Newlight, and we are tremendously excited about the path ahead.”
Newlight uses microorganisms found in California that eat greenhouse gas as their food source to grow a molecule inside of their cells, like muscle, called PHB (polyhydroxybutyrate). PHB is a molecule found in most life on Earth and is used by living organisms as a biological energy and carbon storage vehicle. When purified, PHB becomes meltable and moldable, able to deliver broad-based functionality within the materials market. By weight, AirCarbon is approximately 40% oxygen derived from air and 60% carbon derived from greenhouse gas.
Frederick Teo, CEO of GenZero, said, “Newlight’s work is transformational in leveraging the power of both technology and nature to produce biomaterials. By using captured greenhouse gases such as methane to produce a high-quality material (AirCarbon) and replace fossil-based plastics, we can achieve significant reductions in carbon emissions. We are excited to support Newlight in their next phase of growth as they expand their commercial production to meet the increasing demand for zero-carbon materials and deliver decarbonisation impact at scale.”
Oxy Low Carbon Ventures is leveraging its parent company’s carbon management expertise to deliver solutions that reduce emissions to help Oxy and others achieve net zero. OLCV is making investments in technology, projects and development platforms across the carbon capture value chain. It is currently leading the construction of Stratos, the world’s largest Direct Air Capture plant in Texas, and building sequestration hubs throughout the U.S. Gulf coast region to provide large-scale and rapid carbon removal solutions to help the climate.
“We are excited to work with innovative companies like Newlight who share our vision in decarbonising a multitude of industries that can help accelerate the path to net zero,” said Derek Willis, Vice President, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures. “Direct Air Capture provides a unique opportunity to supply CO2 as a raw material to create low carbon products. We look forward to supporting Newlight as they work to unlock new value from CO2 while addressing climate change.”
Today, AirCarbon is being used to develop and manufacture products across a range of industries, with a goal of turning everyday products into a consumer-driven force for carbon reduction. The capital investment in this round will enable Newlight to significantly expand the production of AirCarbon at both its existing California facility as well as a new AirCarbon production facility being built in Ohio.
“Our vision is a world where greenhouse gas is used the way nature uses it–as a resource–and by turning it into high-performance consumer products, we can provide companies with a measurable and scalable path to help them decarbonise their products and move closer to a net-zero world,” said Herrema.
Newlight uses greenhouse gas to make a high-performance material called AirCarbon®. AirCarbon is a biomaterial produced by natural microorganisms that is being used to decarbonise industrial segments ranging from foodware to fashion. Newlight’s mission is to help end climate change by using greenhouse gas as a resource.
For more information on Newlight, visit https://www.newlight.com/.
GenZero is an investment platform company focused on accelerating decarbonisation globally. Founded by Temasek, it seeks to deliver positive climate impact alongside long-term sustainable financial returns by investing in opportunities with the potential to be nurtured into impactful and scalable solutions.
Driven by a common purpose to decarbonise for future generations, GenZero recognises the need for a holistic and integrated approach to achieve a net zero world. It adopts a flexible investment approach across three focus areas to drive climate impact: (i) nature-based solutions that help protect and restore our natural ecosystems while benefiting local communities and biodiversity; (ii) technology-based solutions that deliver deep decarbonisation impact; and (iii) carbon ecosystem enablers which refer to companies and solutions that support the development of an effective, efficient, and credible carbon ecosystem.
For more information on GenZero, visit https://genzero.co/.