Loam Bio’s technology promises to supercharge the amount of carbon that can be stored in soil through applying a coating to the plant’s seeds.
It’s a dirty business, and the startup has closed a huge Series B $105 million funding round that was led by Chris Sacca’s Lowercarbon Capital and Wollemi. It also included Main Sequence, Grok Ventures, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), Horizons Ventures and Acre Venture partners.
The company was founded by Guy Hudson, Tegan Nock, Mick Wettenhall and Guy Webb in 2019. The team will use the injection of capital to finalise the commercialisation of the
At the same time they are releasing their CarbonBuilder seed product to market. It’s an ‘inoculum’ which operates at the root of a canola plant to increase the amount of carbon drawn down from the atmosphere and stored in the soil.
“Loam’s microbial technology enables greater volumes of carbon to be stored in soils for longer periods of time,” says Co-founder and CEO, Guy Hudson.
“Increasing the quantity and quality of carbon units farmers can produce per hectare, makes participating in carbon projects more economically valuable for farming enterprises.”
It’s a staggering achievement, and the size of the investment represents the huge leaps forward the company has made in shifting the thinking about how much carbon can be stored in cropping soils. Loam Bio has shown that farmers can now contribute to locking up carbon, which opens up a potentially huge market.
“This year we’re moving from pre-commercial to commercial and launching our products in Australia, working with a limited number of farmers to help them gain value from our products and services in Australia.” says Guy Hudson.
“We’re moving towards commercialisation in the US, which will come in 2024, followed by our expansion into Brazil to help farmers globally access value from carbon markets.”
According to Paul Hunyor, Co-founder of Wollemi Capital, “Soil carbon capture is both a climate imperative as well as a huge financial opportunity for both farmers and investors. Wollemi, a global climate investment specialist, is excited to support Loam’s pioneering work.”