Climate tech
Q1 202429.01.2024

Carbon Accounting & Offsetting

Picture of Shubham Jaipuria

Shubham Jaipuria

at Sifted

Carbon offset schemes — which aim to track and balance emissions by finding other ways to reduce carbon in the atmosphere — have long battled with an image problem. Critics will tell you that businesses purchase low-quality credits and misrepresent their efforts — in other words, greenwashing — so credibility in the industry is incredibly hard won. Undeterred, new startups are piling into the market with promises to make it more accessible, efficient and trustworthy.

VC funds, however, have taken a lot of interest in the industry, with the likes of Lightspeed, Blackrock and General Atlantic all taking bets on startups working on carbon measurement, verification, recording and trading. In 2022, carbon offset startups in Europe secured $1.2bn, propelled by a single $500m round claimed by Paris-based EcoVadis; before dipping to $594m last year. Berlin carbon accounting firm Plan A were one of the biggest winners, scooping a $27m Series A extension round.

In reality, carbon offsetting in Europe has not seen many big rounds: just 22 out of 330+ carbon accounting and offset deals in the past three years have crossed the $15m mark. But as policymakers bring in more sustainability reporting requirements, it’s likely we’ll see more acquisition activity, with businesses keen to bulk up their capabilities ahead of new rules.

20 startups to watch

  • Plan A logo

    Sifted score

    9.95
    -

    Plan A

    Carbon emissions tracking and reduction platform.

    • Strong investor(s)
    • Serial founder(s)
    • Hiring
    • Year founded

      2017

    • HQ

      Berlin, Germany

    • Latest round

      Series A
      25m / Sep 2023

    • Total funding

      37m

  • Ecologi logo

    Sifted score

    8.17
    -

    Ecologi

    • Strong investor(s)
    • Serial founder(s)
    • Hiring
    • Year founded

      2019

    • HQ

      Bristol, United Kingdom

    • Latest round

      Seed
      4.3m / Nov 2021

    • Total funding

      10.1m

  • Vaayu logo

    Sifted score

    7.96
    -

    Vaayu

    Carbon emissions calculation for retailers.

    • Strong investor(s)
    • Serial founder(s)
    • Hiring
    • Year founded

      2020

    • HQ

      Berlin, Germany

    • Latest round

      Seed
      10.7m / Apr 2022

    • Total funding

      12.1m

  • Climatiq logo

    Sifted score

    7.93
    -

    Climatiq

    Automated carbon emissions management solution.

    • Strong investor(s)
    • Serial founder(s)
    • Hiring
    • Year founded

      2021

    • HQ

      Berlin, Germany

    • Latest round

      Grant
      6m / Mar 2023

    • Total funding

      7.8m

  • Carbon Maps logo

    Sifted score

    7.51
    -

    Carbon Maps

    Environmental impact analysis for food industry.

    • Strong investor(s)
    • Serial founder(s)
    • Hiring
    • Year founded

      2023

    • HQ

      Lille, France

    • Latest round

      Seed
      3m / Dec 2023

    • Total funding

      7m

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