Impact startups are getting global attention!
After a record year for impact startups in 2021 ($66B), a further $12.9B has been raised in Q1 2022, reveals a Dealroom report. The report adds that Q1 2022 was the fifth-highest quarter for impact funding (after all four quarters of 2021).
Currently, there are 193 impact-related unicorns globally.
What are Impact startups?
As the name suggests, impact startups aim to impact society or the environment positively. It could be anything from developing new technologies to help reduce environmental pollution to creating social media platforms that help people connect with others and build communities.
Impact startups are witnessing a meteoric rise worldwide as more and more people are looking for ways to use their business to make a difference. Many of these businesses are supported by government initiatives and investment funds as there is increasing recognition of the role they can play in solving global challenges.
While North America leads in absolute terms for impact startup funding, Europe punches well above its weight, says the report. Europe is also the most impact-focused ecosystem, with 15 per cent of all funding going to impact startups.
Dealroom recently released a list of the top 100 impact startups globally to watch based on Dealroom Signal, a new predictive algorithm feature launched earlier this year.
Rather than creating a score about a startup’s general quality or performance, Dealroom Signal is specifically aimed at surfacing the most promising upcoming funding opportunities.
The algorithm is calibrated to find companies showing strong traction that are predicted to be lining up for a funding event or that are round-ready.
Here we have listed seven Dutch-based startups that have been featured in Dealroom’s Top 100 Impact Startups to Watch list.
Founder/s: Crijn Bouman, Kanter van Deurzen, Dr. Joost van der Weijde
Rocsys is a provider of autonomous charging solutions powered by robotics and artificial intelligence. It can automate fast chargers up to 350kW and MW-capable chargers in the near future, allowing EVs of all types to be charged automatically within minutes. According to the company, EV infrastructure operators can increase their asset utilisation with smart solutions.
Founder/s: Nikolaos Alfieris
Farmvent is revolutionising in-store vertical farming by building technologically advanced farms for indoor cultivation through robotics automation, AI, and plant science.
Modular vertical farms are said to grow herbs and leafy greens efficiently. In addition, they are enhanced with a new robotic approach that uses IoT technology, machine learning, and data science.
Further, the software and hardware ensure that each plant is monitored for its nutrient, light, and water usage, ensuring optimal growing conditions in every new crop cycle.
Farmvent farms are environmentally friendly and sustainable – they use 95 per cent less water, have minimum production costs, and employ maximum safety measures to reduce external microbial contamination.
HQ: The Hague
Founder/s: Jordi de Vos, Mesbah Sabur
Circularise helps plastic manufacturers, brands, and OEMs to trace raw materials from the source into parts and, ultimately, to end products. Circularise uses blockchain and other emerging technologies to enable companies to share data about their products while retaining privacy over sensitive information.
The company aims at sustainability and believes that adopting a circular economy will prevent the waste of raw materials in making a product. It disrupts the long-held linear systems and reduces the harmful effects on the environment.
Circularise develops an open-source protocol and decentralised network to integrate transparency into global supply chains and migrate towards a circular economy.
Founder/s: Dimo Yanchev
Almacena is a platform for next-generation coffee sourcing that promotes fair trade and enables customers to buy coffee directly from the farmers, negotiate terms, sign contracts, and execute the deals digitally. Its Trade Dashboard integrates finance, storage, logistics, insurance, and data collection from African producers to the European warehouse or factory.
Currently, Almacena’s coffee marketplace has over 160 cooperatives with 300,000 farmers onboarded. Co-ops use AlmacenaOrigin App in four African countries to map data from over 18,000 smallholder coffee farmers. In addition, the platform serves leading importers and roasters in 11 European countries.
Bflike is a food product supplier company that primarily provides meat and fish alternatives, thanks to its patent-pending vegan fat and blood platforms.
The company has developed a unique technology that allows for plant-based alternatives to be created that have similar characteristics to their animal-based counterparts in terms of appearance, texture, and cooking methods.
Bflike licences its proprietary technology and premix ingredient solutions to food manufacturers and retailers, supporting them to commercialise their own meat and alternative fish products.
The Dutch startup developed its technology with technical support from TOP BV, the Wageningen-based food tech service provider and subsidiary firm under BOX.
Founder/s: Jouri Schoemaker, Martijn Bijmolt
Pieter Pot has created a circular solution that uses reusable pots to deliver groceries. The company collects, empties, and manages the cleaning and refilling of its packaging. In doing so, Pieter Pot allows consumers to reduce their plastic consumption without changing how they buy.
HQ: The Hague
Founder/s: Kars Veling, Janneke Plaisier, Martin Kool
LessonUp is an online teaching platform for educators, schools, and organisations. The platform has compiled a collection of free lessons that can be used in class directly, created by teachers and by publishers, museums, and non-profits.