Sky Ocean Ventures invests in 10 innovative UK businesses fighting the plastics epidemic

Sky Ocean Ventures has teamed up with the Government to invest in ten UK companies that have identified innovative solutions to solving the ocean plastics crisis. The ideas range from biodegradable water bottles and packaging made from seaweed, right through to an ingenious way of reducing the plastic microfibre waste that comes from the clothes we wear – by developing clothes that grow with children.

Launched in March 2018, Sky Ocean Ventures is a £25m impact investment fund committed to accelerating young companies and entrepreneurs who are developing ideas that can help turn off the plastics tap. It’s part of Sky’s Bigger Picture initiative and is the solutions arm of the Sky Ocean Rescue campaign, which shines a spotlight on the issues that affect ocean health and inspires behaviour change.

This year, Sky Ocean Ventures and Innovate UK – which is the Government’s innovation agency – announced a £6m joint funding commitment in the global battle against plastic pollution. These 10 UK companies are the first to be funded under the commitment.

Jeremy Darroch, Group Chief Executive, Sky, said:
“At Sky we recognise that we have a responsibility beyond our business. That’s why we’re supporting these ten innovators through Sky Ocean Ventures, the impact investment fund we setup as part of our commitment to help create a better and plastic-free future for our oceans. By investing in innovative new products and materials we will help turn off the plastics tap.”

The recipients of the funding all have a pioneering idea in either material innovation, circular economy or responsible consumption.

Business Secretary, Andrea Leadsom, said:
Trailblazing UK businesses are giving us all the choice to buy more sustainable clothing, packaging and cosmetics that are better for our environment.

“Consumers have shown they are keen for green and we’re committed to championing those innovative companies that lead the way in this, protecting the planet while at the same time opening up huge opportunities for the UK economy.”

The first investment was awarded to Naturbeads, a company working to manufacture a replacement to the ocean-polluting microbeads that, despite initial bans in “rinse-off”cosmetics, are found in many personal and home care products and paints.  

The other nine companies to receive funding are*:       

  • Bagboard, London
  • Blue Green Vision, Northumberland
  • Choose Water, Edinburgh
  • DAME, London
  • Flexi-Hex, Cornwall
  • HD Wool, West Yorkshire
  • Oceanium, Oban, Scotland
  •  Petit Pli, London
  • And one biotech that is not disclosing its work until the publication of its scientific discovery later this year…

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