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September 7, 2023

Opna Secures $6.5M to Revolutionize Carbon Project Financing

Global firms aim for net zero by 2050, but just 7% stay on course. McKinsey's insight

In a world racing towards net-zero commitments, an alarming gap exists between corporate pledges and actual progress. McKinsey's report reveals that of the nearly 5200 businesses aiming for net-zero targets by 2050, only a mere 7% are on course to fulfill their promises. To bridge this chasm, the voluntary carbon market (VCM) is set to emerge as a trillion-dollar industry. Enter Opna, a UK-based climate fintech firm poised to transform carbon project financing. With a recent $6.5 million seed funding round led by European VC Atomico, Opna is gearing up to revolutionize the industry. Join us as we explore how Opna aims to reshape the future of sustainability.

While the world embraces the urgency of achieving net-zero targets, the stark reality is that most companies are lagging behind their pledges. McKinsey's findings indicate that only 7% of businesses on this path are making tangible progress. The missing link, it seems, lies in the voluntary carbon market (VCM), projected to burgeon into a trillion-dollar sector.

Opna, formerly known as Salt, steps onto the stage as a climate fintech company with a bold mission. The UK-based firm is crafting a carbon project financing platform, one designed to empower corporations to discover, fund, and monitor high-quality carbon projects transparently, cost-effectively, and efficiently.

Opna recently secured a pivotal $6.5 million in seed funding, a testament to its vision's resonance in the market. Leading the charge was European VC Atomico, renowned for backing transformative ventures like TestGorilla and Vaayu. Existing supporters, including Pale Blue Dot, MCJ Collective, Angelinvest, and Tiny VC, rallied behind the cause. The round also attracted notable individuals such as Cristina Stenbeck, Allison Pickens, Luke Griffiths, and Stijn Christiaens, bolstering Opna's journey.

Opna Founder Shilpika Gautam emphasizes the critical role Opna plays in helping corporations finance carbon projects underpinning carbon credits. Many corporations are eager to contribute to net-zero goals but face hurdles like a lack of expertise, high transaction costs, analog infrastructure, and protracted processes. Opna aims to provide the platform, data, and financial innovation necessary to unleash this capital, bridging the gap between corporate commitments and carbon projects seeking financing.

As a significant milestone, Atomico Partner Terese Hougaard will join Opna's board. Terese Hougaard highlights Opna's potential in transforming the voluntary carbon market through its data-driven platform, revolutionizing how businesses engage with meaningful emissions reduction.

Founded in 2022 by Shilpika Gautam, a Guinness World Record-breaking climate advocate with over 15 years of experience in building commodities businesses, Opna envisions a future where corporations can efficiently connect with trusted and vetted project developers. This approach reduces the time and cost spent on identifying credible projects to finance while creating new capital and funding avenues for project developers.

Opna offers a digitized portfolio and asset management tool, allowing corporations to monitor financed projects effectively. Through regular KPI tracking and risk reporting, this tool provides transparency and accountability in the journey toward sustainability.

Neil Hodgson Coyle
Neil Hodgson-Coyle
Editorial chief at TechNews180
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