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The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has made a significant stride in promoting environmental sustainability by investing $3.5M in C16 Biosciences. This Y Combinator-backed company is an innovative player in the market, producing alternatives to palm oil, notorious for its environmental devastation.

  • Other Investors: In addition to this generous grant, Elemental Excelerator, a nonprofit accelerator committed to impactful climate tech, has also contributed $1M.
  • C16 Biosciences’ Unique Approach: Taking an innovative approach, C16 Biosciences, founded by Shara Ticku, David Heller, and Harry McNamara, utilizes yeast and agriculturally derived feedstocks to create an eco-friendly alternative to palm oil. Currently, their product, branded as Palmless, is used in the beauty industry.
  • Use of Funds: With the infusion of new funds, C16 plans to extend its innovative solutions beyond beauty products. The company aims to develop new oil recipes for the food industry using waste stream feedstocks and non-agriculturally derived feedstocks. Ticku, intriguingly suggests the potential of using feedstocks derived directly from carbon capture.

Other investors in C16 include Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy and DCVC. To date, C16 has managed to raise $36.3M in equity funding, as well as $2M in grant funding via the Department of Energy and Agile BioFoundry.

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