Carbon Reform, a startup building technology to reduce CO2, improve air quality, and save energy from buildings, has announced the closing of a $3 million seed investment. The round was led by Azolla Ventures, a climate tech VC fund created by Prime Coalition, that invests in early-stage technology companies with the potential for gigaton-scale climate impact. Other participants in the round include Virya LLC, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, Plug and Play Ventures, Gaingels, and Preston Schell.
Traditional commercial building HVAC systems require an enormous amount of energy, much of which is spent heating, cooling, or otherwise conditioning outside air. Any additional air purification done inside the building often adds additional energy usage, hurting both the building’s carbon footprint and the owner or occupants’ pockets. In an age where decarbonization and healthy indoor air are of equal importance, building owners face a dilemma. This is where Carbon Reform’s Carbon Capsule system comes in.
By combining traditional air purification techniques with novel permanent carbon capture technology, buildings with Carbon Reform’s products installed can get the best of both worlds: clean, healthy air low in CO2, volatile organic compounds, and pathogens, and energy savings from reduced outside air conditioning. The startup plans to use the seed funding to grow the team, expand facilities, and install the first full-scale pilot units in commercial buildings.
“Azolla Ventures is proud to lead Carbon Reform’s seed round and support the company’s efforts to tackle greenhouse gas emissions from buildings,” said Amy Duffuor, General Partner at Azolla Ventures and member of Carbon Reform’s Board of Directors. “Carbon Reform’s modular carbon capture system is a gamechanger. It retrofits into existing HVAC infrastructure to scrub CO2 from air, allowing carbon capture and sequestration in one device, alongside energy savings and indoor air quality improvement. We’re looking forward to supporting the Carbon Reform team during their next stage of growth.”
Jo Norris and Nick Martin, co-founders of Carbon Reform, are looking forward to realizing their technology and business model in a ripe market, staying true to their mission in the process. “As a women-led and LGBT-owned enterprise, we’re grateful and refreshed to have the support of investors who not only believe strongly in our climate and health mission, but also embody the fundamental values we have as founders around diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, at every level of our organization,” said Jo Norris, Co-Founder and CEO of Carbon Reform. “The security we feel in this support provides an invaluable framework for the groundbreaking work we are setting out to do.”
“We are excited to have the support of world-class investors that are helping us realize our mission of democratizing access to carbon capture technology,” said Nick Martin, Co-Founder and COO of Carbon Reform. “They each bring a unique skillset to our team, be it industry connections, culture-building strategy, or subject matter expertise.”
Solomon Goldstein-Rose, Operating Partner at Virya LLC, a climate fund founded by TED curator Chris Anderson, said: “Carbon removal is essential to reach net-negative emissions, but most systems require outright payments per ton. Wouldn’t it be brilliant if carbon removal could pay for itself by making an essential service such as HVAC more efficient? This is why we’re investing in Carbon Reform.”
“Climate mitigation is among the most pressing issues we face today,” said Mahati Sridhar, Vice President, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. “We’re excited to partner with Jo and Nick as they capitalize on deep industry knowledge and strong market tailwinds to democratize carbon-capture solutions for one of the country’s most significant emitters: commercial buildings.”