SINGAPORE – June 7, 2023 – Wavemaker Impact, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, GenZero, and Singapore’s Temasek have announced the launch of Rize, their new agri-tech startup to decarbonise rice cultivation in Southeast Asia and the rest of Asia. The startup will be headed by Chief Executive Officer Dhruv Sawhney who was appointed last month.

Following the announcement of the venture in October 2022, the startup is building a platform that will rapidly identify and implement the most effective strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in rice cultivation and the right economic incentives to drive the adoption of sustainable cultivation techniques.

Rize’s first two markets are Indonesia and Vietnam. The startup already has local teams in place, and pilots have been conducted in both countries with positive initial results.

“Dhruv’s wealth of experience is crucial in driving Rize’s vision as a scalable and sustainable platform for decarbonising rice cultivation. With 90% of rice grown in Asia, predominantly by smallholder farmers, it is imperative to find an Asian solution to tackle this climate change challenge. Rize has already seen promising traction, attracting sign-ups from over 2,000 hectares of rice farms for its trials. We have full confidence in Dhruv’s ability to lead innovation and effectively reach millions of rice farmers in the region. As Rize plans to expand its operations in the second half of the year to further test its solution, the potential of this venture is truly exciting,” said Marie Cheong, Rize board member from Wavemaker Impact.

Rize CEO Dhruv Sawhney joined the team after heading up Nuture. Farm, one of India’s largest digital platforms for facilitating sustainable agriculture. Under Dhruv’s leadership, Nuture.Farm onboarded over 2.5 million farmers and 100,000 agricultural retailers and led one of India’s largest programs to eliminate burning of crop residue. In addition to direct experience in decarbonising the rice value chain, Dhruv is also a successful startup founder having built and exited his food supply chain business to Zomato in 2018.

“After enteric emissions, rice is the second-largest driver of agricultural emissions globally. Technology exists to decarbonise rice cultivation, but it requires farmers to change their behaviour. Using carbon credits and other economic incentives, I’m excited to take on this important challenge and lead the Rize team in developing a highly innovative and scalable solution that creates a win-win-win proposition: improving the livelihoods of the 400 million people involved in rice cultivation in the region, enhancing food security for a staple crop, and making a difference in the fight against climate change,” said Dhruv.

Rice is the greatest climate and food security challenge in the region. Already a staple crop for more than half of the world’s population, rice will see global demand increase by 50% by 2050.1 Rice cultivation is the second-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in agri-food due to methane-emitting bacteria generated from flooded rice paddy fields. Rice is also the leading source of methane emissions in Southeast Asia, responsible for up to 33% of the region’s methane emissions,2 with methane having over 80 times more global warming potential than carbon dioxide.3 Across Asia, the livelihoods of 400 million people on 144 million smallholder farms depend on rice, with the average farm size ranging from 0.5 to 2 hectares.4 There are also significant yield gaps. In Southeast Asia, rice production per hectare lags behind high-producing countries by approximately 40%.5


2 The World Bank, and
5 Analysis using data from


About GenZero
GenZero is an investment platform company focused on accelerating decarbonisation globally. Founded by Temasek, we seek 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, we recognise the need for a holistic and integrated approach to achieve a net zero world. At GenZero, we adopt 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

About Rize
Rize is a joint venture between Wavemaker Impact, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, GenZero, and Temasek to decarbonise rice cultivation in Asia. It is building a platform to identify and implement the most effective strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in rice cultivation, and the right economic incentives to drive the adoption of sustainable cultivation techniques. Rize’s initial target markets are Indonesia and Vietnam, with plans to expand more broadly within the region.
Rize seeks to collaborate with and build on the good work already carried out by organisations, corporates, startups, and academic institutions in the region. For those interested in more information, potential partnerships or to explore job opportunities, please visit

About Temasek
Temasek is an investment company with a net portfolio value of S$403 billion (US$297 billion) as at 31 March 2022. Headquartered in Singapore, it has 12 offices in 8 countries around the world. Temasek’s purpose, “So Every Generation Prospers”, guides it to make a difference for today’s and future generations. The Temasek Charter defines its three roles as an Investor, Institution, and Steward, and shapes its ethos to do well, do right, and do good. Sustainability is at the core of all that Temasek does. It is committed to catalysing solutions to global challenges and activating capital – financial, human, social, and natural – to bring about a better and more inclusive world for all. Please visit for more information.

About Breakthrough Energy
Founded by Bill Gates and backed by many of the world’s top business leaders, BEV has raised more than US$2 billion in committed capital to support cutting-edge companies that are leading the world to net-zero emissions. BEV is a purpose-built investment firm that is seeking to invest, launch and scale global companies that will eliminate GHG emissions throughout the economy as soon as possible. BEV seeks true breakthroughs and is committed to supporting these entrepreneurs and companies by bringing to bear a unique combination of technical, operational, market and policy expertise. BEV is a part of Breakthrough Energy, a network of investment vehicles, philanthropic programs, policy advocacy and other activities committed to scaling the technologies we need to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Visit to learn more.

About Wavemaker Impact
Wavemaker Impact is the first VC-backed climate tech venture builder in Southeast Asia. The Wavemaker Impact team co-founds sustainability startups with proven entrepreneurs, with the goal of reducing 10% of the global carbon budget by 2035. Every company that Wavemaker Impact builds is a ‘100×100’ company – a startup with the potential to abate 100 million metric tons of carbon and be a US$100-million revenue business. The founding team has previously built over 15 companies (including unicorns and an IPO) from scratch and invested over US$300 million in Asian tech companies, including 35 greentech startups.

For more information, visit