Local weather tech VC Contrarian Ventures targets $100M seed fund

For those who ask me, local weather tech investor Contrarian Ventures isn’t so contrarian anymore.

The five-year-old agency is focusing on $100 million for its second seed-stage fund, and it’s doing so smack in the midst of a climate-tech dealmaking boom. So, if something, it’s fashionable.

However when the seed-stage VC — a backer of e-bike maker Zoomo and photo voltaic information agency PVcase — debuted with a $13.6 million fund in 2017, its focus was “clearly contrarian,” founding accomplice Rokas Peciulaitis advised TechCrunch, because the “industries in vogue on the time have been AI and Fintech.”

The launch additionally marked an sudden pivot for Peciulaitis, who says he dove into the scene with “actually zero local weather tech sector expertise.” He’d just lately left an inflation-trading job at Financial institution of America, the place the work was “not fulfilling within the slightest,” Peciulaitis mentioned in a nod to the financial institution’s repute as a major funder of fossil fuels.

In 2017, PitchBook recorded 578 local weather tech offers globally, altogether price $12.5 billion. The sector has since tripled in measurement, as local weather change–pushed excessive climate occasions occupy evermore area in our collective consciousness. To that time: PitchBook tracked 1,130 local weather tech offers globally in 2021, topping $44.8 billion in worth. Local weather tech is cool now, however Peciulaitis’s Lithuania-based enterprise agency is sticking with its identify in any case.

Like several enterprise capital agency, Contrarian says that it stands out via its emphasis on “creating glorious relationships with founders.” Materially, the agency invests in tech that might assist decarbonize transportation, industrial processes, vitality and buildings.

Contrarian has accomplished 21 offers so far, and this yr it expanded past Lithuania with new companions in Berlin and London. The agency backs rising startups in Europe in addition to Israel, however nowhere else within the Center East. At the moment, the agency doesn’t put money into agriculture-related tech, although the class has a significant carbon footprint of its personal.

In an e-mail, Contrarian mentioned it counts London-based tech VC Molten Ventures amongst its restricted companions. The agency declined to share a full listing of its LPs, however acknowledged that none of them have been fossil gas corporations.

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