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Do you have a world-changing company? We want to fund you up to $1 million

February 5, 2019

· 4 min read
Ian Chipman Editorial Director

Friends, applications are open for our next cohort of ambitious startups that are addressing the world’s most urgent environmental and infrastructure issues. Does your company — or a company you know — belong in our 8th cohort? Now is the time to get in touch by taking five minutes to fill out our qualifying application. It’s the first step toward receiving up to $1 million in funding and joining the other 82 companies in our portfolio.

All companies that complete the qualifying application between now and April 12 will also be eligible for our Deal Day on May 14th. You can read more about Deal Day here, but the gist is that we’ll convene our Global Partners — who serve over 50 million customers — and a select group of startups (regardless of whether they are chosen for our next cohort) for some rapid dealmaking, and we’ll even provide a $20,000 award to the first commercial agreement signed that day. Even if you’re not sure if your company is a good fit for our cohort, fill out the qualifying application to throw your name in the hat for Deal Day.

What type of companies are we looking for in our next cohort?

  • Growing businesses from Seed to Series C+ with a working prototype and at least two full-time employees
  • World-changing companies in energy, food & agriculture, water, mobility, the circular economy, and beyond.
  • Enterprises interested in deploying projects in Hawaii, California’s low- to moderate-income communities, and Asia Pacific. In particular, we are interested in funding a new piece of your technology, a new angle on your business model, or an entry into a new geographic territory. We buy down the risk of trying something new that will be transformational for your company. For more details, see our program page and our applicant packet.

Check all those boxes? Great! Let’s talk about the broad challenges we have in our sights, and the kinds of solutions we want to fund in Cohort 8. These are broken down by sector below, but don’t think this is meant to be an exhaustive list. We are searching for our next cohort with a broad lens and abundant curiosity.

Surprise us.

39 ways to change the world


In the energy sector, we want to accelerate the adoption of renewable energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Ideas that can help us put a dent in those challenges include:

1. Grid balancing technologies
2. Connected energy solutions
3. Education and customer engagement tools to help save energy and lower energy costs
4. Financial tools to improve access to clean energy in low- to moderate-income communities
5. Clever ideas and new models to democratize energy
6. Wholesale market monetization tools
7. Efficiency solutions
8. Electrification of everything

Where does your company fit?


In the transportation sector, we are working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the availability and affordability of mobility options for all people. Ideas that can help us achieve those goals include:

9. Improved infrastructure for pedestrian safety and multi-modal transportation options
10. Zero-emission micro mobility options
11. Alternative payment methods for multimodal transportation options
12. New approaches to electrification of transportation
13. Charging infrastructure technologies
14. Efficiencies in shipping, aviation, and logistics
15. Parking management and dynamic parking solutions


In the water sector, we’re addressing water stress and scarcity issues, regardless of location, and working to increase access to clean water for low- to moderate-income communities. Ideas for getting that done include:

16. Infrastructure measurement and repair
17. Sensing and metering
18. Cloud-based mapping
19. Capital-efficient utility upgrades
20. Efficient irrigation and landscaping practices
21. Clean drinking water solutions
22. Emergency preparedness
23. Water reuse solutions
24. Water trading/water swap models

Join our portfolio companies in remaking our most critical systems


In the agriculture sector, we want to improve food supply resiliency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with food production, distribution, and disposal. Ideas that can help us get there include:

25. Tools to increase local food production
26. Sensors, automation, vertical farming
27. Food safety, quality, and traceability tools
28. Protein alternatives
29. Sustainable, high-quality inputs and alternative feeds
30. Soil management technologies
31. Energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions for the ag sector
32. Healthy food alternatives with a focus on affordability, education and outreach
33. Workforce development in the agriculture sector


We are also working to decouple economic growth from resource use and create a more circular economy. Some ideas we’d love to see include:

34. Carbon market innovations
35. Waste to value ideas
36. Plastic alternatives
37. Waste reduction and upcycling
38. Natural resource regeneration


Does your company not fit into any of these areas? We still want to hear from you. In fact, this last idea on our list might be the most important:

39. Your world-changing idea

Ready to take the first step? Take five minutes to fill out our qualifying application, or refer a company today. Let’s see what we can make tomorrow look like together.

Photo by Michael Olsen on Unsplash