Greener wants to help consumers and businesses be more sustainable • TechCrunch

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Many consumers and companies want to reduce their environmental impact, but may not know where to start or how to support the necessary changes. The founder of Greener, Australian cleantech startup Tom Ferrier wants to help. He argues that sustainable development and climate action don’t have to be complicated.

His startup aims to simplify the decision-making process to help consumers and businesses understand sustainability and reduce their emissions, for example by making different purchasing decisions – and he points to statistics that suggest about 88% of consumers in the US and UK want businesses to help them be more sustainable.

For consumers, Greener offers an app that links to a user’s bank account, allowing customers to learn about their carbon footprint and receive suggestions to make greener choices based on potential purchases for more than 250 brands.

“For consumers, it’s as easy as downloading the app and securely connecting their bank account with our open banking technology partner Basiq to start tracking their carbon footprint [of every dollar spent],” he said. “Once a new user signs up for Greener, open banking technology, along with data and expertise from leading climate scientists, allows the Greener app to instantly calculate the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the user’s spending.”

When asked about user data privacy, Perrier explained that Basiq’s open banking allows Greener customers to easily register and connect their bank account. “Basiq Open Banking also allows us to securely transfer anonymous aggregated data to businesses to provide them with insights that help them build customer loyalty and attract even more climate-conscious customers,” Ferrier said.

Offering a two-pronged technology solution, Greener also provides customized solutions for businesses of all sizes aimed at reducing their footprint based on type, size, business model and ongoing sustainability activities. Ferrier told TechCrunch that businesses can see where they are on their sustainability journey and receive personalized, clear advice on what they can do to reduce carbon emissions and waste.

After testing the consumer programs, the company saw that it was able to help shoppers reduce emissions from their purchases by 23%. The company also recorded more than 10% customer growth as customers switched to greener businesses from non-green competition services.

Today, the startup is announcing a seed funding round of A$4 million ($2.5 million) led by NAB Ventures with participation from RealVC. It plans to use the funding to continue development of the product, which is currently in beta, and build to a public launch of the Greener for Business consumer app and solutions next year.

“While there are other carbon tracking and offsetting platforms on the market, no other company is addressing climate solutions from both the consumer and business side,” Ferrier says.

Greener’s app is free for consumers, while businesses fund a low-margin model and can be rewarded with new customers and personalized services, he told TechCrunch.

L-R: Greener co-founders Tom Ferrier and Neil McVeigh (Image: Greener)

Griner suggests that the opportunity is huge, with 300g of CO2 for every dollar spent, and $184 billion spent globally every day.

The main challenge facing climate action is awareness, Ferrier continued. He added that the company sees education as the solution, bridging the gap between motivation and know-how and rewarding consumers and businesses for their efforts.

The startup has partnered with a number of brands such as Microsoft, T2 Tea, Scoop Wholefoods, Brew Dog, Huskee and Go for Zero since its inception in 2019. Greener is also working with the City of Sydney and the Australian Retail Association (ARA) to help its members accelerate net zero strategies. Previous supporters of Greener include Phil Vernon, former CEO of managed investment fund Australian Ethical.

“We all have a role to play in climate action, and NAB certainly recognizes our role,” Todd Forrest, managing director of NAB Ventures, said in a statement. “We are always looking for ways to support our customers and colleagues in taking action to reduce carbon emissions, and we believe the Greener product has great potential. Greener is a great fit for NAB Ventures and we look forward to working with them and exploring further opportunities together.”

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