Recent News

Flawsome raises equity funding to scale sustainable beverage brand

Ethical and sustainable cold-pressed juice drinks brand, Flawsome, secures equity funding to scale its business operations and develop new products.

London, United Kingdom Flawsome Brands, an ethical and sustainable cold-pressed juice drinks brand, announces that it has raised equity funding with the help of ClearlySo, Europe’s leading impact investment bank. Flawsome plans to use the new funding to scale-up its marketing and operations capabilities as well as to develop and launch new products.

According to research from the University of Edinburgh, an estimated 4.5 million tonnes of fruit and vegetables are discarded in the UK each year for being the incorrect size or misshapen. In addition to wasted produce, an estimated 1,000,000 plastic drink bottles are bought every minute (or 20,000 per second) globally with less than 50% being collected for recycling and only 7% being turned into new bottles.

In a world where waste and environmental damage are major issues to be tackled, Flawsome offers an ethical juice brand that addresses the problem of millions of fruits and vegetables lying waste due to their size and shape while providing its customers with a healthy, natural, vegan drink in fully recyclable containers. By producing a three-fold sustainable product, Flawsome has already saved over 7.5 million fruits from being wasted; abated 400 tonnes worth of 608 CO₂ emissions (which equals 460 return flights from London to New York); and avoided the use of 330,000 plastic bottles, equivalent to 10 tonnes of plastic (the weight of 5 black cabs) – and one of the most common types on plastic waste.

Maciek Kacprzyk, co-founder and CEO of Flawsome, stated: “Matias and the ClearlySo team have been instrumental in supporting, mentoring and empowering us for the last 3 months through some exciting times. We are chuffed to reach our initial investment target and invite on Flawsome! board 7 impact and FMCG related investors coming from companies such as Unilever or Coca-Cola. With this support we believe to accelerate our impact and support even more farmers. Flawsome! is on the mission to create a world where food isn’t wasted needlessly and now we are ready to bring our impact to a whole new level.”

Matias Wibowo, investment director at ClearlySo, commented: “Flawsome is one of the few early-stage businesses in our pipeline that has shown strong traction in eliminating food-waste through the ethical consumerism movement that is now becoming mainstream. The business does so by utilising the strengths of both their brand and high-quality products. In addition, the team has done exceptionally in executing a cost-effective supply chain. All this excites our investors to get involved.”

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Notes to the Editors

About Flawsome!

Flawsome! exists to inspire society to rethink how they perceive food waste, by sourcing its high quality, artisan juice drinks from fruit and vegetables that are wonky, misshapen or surplus produce. Flawsome! products are also sold in sustainable packaging and does not require refrigeration, making their environmental impact even greater.

About ClearlySo

ClearlySo is the Europe’s leading impact investment bank, working exclusively with enterprises and funds delivering positive social, ethical, and/or environmental impact as well as financial return.

Originally founded in 2008, ClearlySo has helped more than 130 clients raise more than £248 million in impact investment from its extensive network of high-net-worth individual and institutional investors.

ClearlySo is headquartered in London.

Further Information

Karina Sudenyte
Co-Founder and CMO
Flawsome!
E
: karina@flawsomedrinks.com
T: 07908324671

John Lloyd
Chief Marketing Officer
ClearlySo
E
: john.lloyd@clearlyso.com
T: 02074909520

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Ichthion secures £1 million to remove plastics from rivers and oceans

Using award-winning and cutting-edge technologies to restore the ocean environment, Ichthion removes plastics and synthetic waste before they travel through the entire marine ecosystem.

London, United Kingdom Ichthion, a leading developer of disruptive technologies to remove plastics and synthetic waste from rivers and oceans, announces that it has secured £1 million in funding with the help of ClearlySo, Europe’s leading impact investment bank. Ichthion plans to use the new funding, a mixture of equity investment and grants, for hiring key staff, product optimisation and testing, and cashflow through to first commercial contract.

Plastics in oceans and water courses is increasingly a topic of public awareness. There is approximately 150 million tonnes of plastic in contaminated ecosystems with a further 12 million tonnes entering the marine environment annually. Approximately 90% of plastic pollution in the oceans is coming from 10 rivers and is forecast to triple by 2025 without significant interventions.

Ichthion has three systems to remove plastic from different bodies of water named Azure, Cobalt and Ultramarine. The model Azure was designed for deployment in rivers to prevent plastic waste from reaching marine environments, and it can collect up to 80 tonnes of plastic per day from any river. Current technologies can only manage up to 7 tonnes per day. Combined with the latest recycling technologies (as well as partnerships with a UK company developing cutting-edge technology for recycling) it is a real game-changer. 

The models Cobalt and Ultramarine use static infrastructures and transport systems respectively to recover plastic particles and microplastics from critical locations across the coastline and the ocean whilst safeguarding marine life. These technologies can reduce the cost of plastic pollution removal, per kilogram, by up to 97.5% on conventional methodologies. Also, they can offer a factor of 14 reduction on the next best competitor; with minimal input required through its self-cleaning and self-driving format. The systems enable the easy collection of plastic material without the need for deploying expensive and dedicated solutions, and reduce the requirement for additional support networks.

Ichthion have signed a LOI with the Ecuadorian government to deploy Azure systems in two of the most polluted rivers of the country, which was officially announced recently by the minister of Environment during the IV UN assembly for the environment. The plastics that leave from the rivers towards the Ecuadorian coasts are directed by the oceanic currents towards the Galapagos Islands, and for this reason it is important to avoid the flow of plastics.

Inty Grønneberg, co-founder and chief executive of Ichthion, stated: “Closing the round is a solid step for our company in our goal to reduce by 70% in 10 years the total amount of plastics entering into the oceans. We are now looking manufacturing companies that share our vision and would like to partner with us to speed up the deployment process worldwide.”

Hayley Collen, investment director at ClearlySo, commented: “ClearlySo is proud to help innovative businesses like Ichthion raise capital to develop and scale game changing solutions that dramatically reduce the amount of plastic waste in rivers and oceans.”

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Notes to the Editors

About Ichthion

The global ecosystem is under immense pressure, facing myriad problems both complex in nature and interwoven with uncertainty.

By addressing all aspects of a problem and fusing science, engineering, and design, Ichthion delivers radical, multifaceted technology solutions to counter the threat.

At Ichthion’s core lies a vision of a sustainable future, one that can be achieved though innovative technology and the elegant application of knowledge.

Ichthion has developed award-winning technology that can remove greater volumes of plastic from the world’s rivers and oceans than all existing technologies.

About ClearlySo

ClearlySo is the Europe’s leading impact investment bank, working exclusively with enterprises and funds delivering positive social, ethical, and/or environmental impact as well as financial return.

Originally founded in 2008, ClearlySo has helped more than 130 clients raise more than £248 million in impact investment from its extensive network of high-net-worth individual and institutional investors.

ClearlySo is headquartered in London.

Further Information

Inty Grønneberg
Co-founder and CEO
Ichthion
E
: i.gronneberg@ichthion.com

John Lloyd
Chief Marketing Officer
ClearlySo
E
: john.lloyd@clearlyso.com
T: 020 7490 9520

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ClearlySo makes new board appointments, prepares for future growth

ClearlySo welcome the appointment of Gillian Wilmot as chairman, joining recent board additions Tracy Lewis and Joseph Krant. 

London, United Kingdom ClearlySo, Europe’s leading impact investment bank, announces today that it has appointed Gillian Wilmot as chairman. Gillian has a strong background in the consumer sector before she developed a wide range of corporate, non-profit and government experience in a variety of fields. She is also an experienced mentor and has helped coach many high growth businesses and their executive teams.

Gillian joins two other recent board additions. Tracy Lewis is chairman of Inspired Thinking Group, and a non-executive director of Staffline Group Plc and Bluebella Lingerie, following a successful career as an entrepreneur in the retail sector. Joseph Krant, currently an associate partner at Catalyst Advisors Netherlands, has previously spent nearly 30 years at Dutch merchant bank Kempen & Co., which was sold to Dexia for approximately Euro 1 billion. Chris Hulatt, co-founder of Octopus Investments, joined in 2016 and remains on the ClearlySo Board.

The new board appointments come at a time of tremendous growth for ClearlySo and impact investing more broadly. In 2018, ClearlySo helped enterprise and fund clients raise a record £72m versus £45m in 2017. The 20 clients assisted last year included HCT Group, Bulb Energy, Unity Trust Bank and Ecoffee Cups. In addition, ClearlySo marked its 10-year anniversary in September.

Commenting on the new board appointments, Rodney Schwartz, chief executive of ClearlySo, said:

“We are absolutely thrilled to have brought such extraordinary talent to ClearlySo’s board at such an exciting time for the company. The diverse set of skills and experience of our new Board will position us extremely well for the future. I am especially pleased that Gillian has joined, as she has the rare quality to both add value directly and galvanise others in a common endeavour.”

Further commenting, Gillian Wilmot said:

“ClearlySo is an inspirational organisation, whose determination to ensure that business is a force for good is something I greatly admire and support. As demand for impact investing continues to surge, I look forward to helping ClearlySo further capitalise and develop its market leading position.”

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Notes to the Editors

About ClearlySo

ClearlySo is Europe’s leading impact investment bank, working exclusively with enterprises and funds delivering positive social, ethical, and/or environmental impact as well as financial return.

Originally founded in 2008, ClearlySo has helped more than 130 clients raise more than £248 million in impact investment from its extensive network of high-net-worth individual and institutional investors.

ClearlySo is headquartered in London.

Gillian Wilmot bio

Gillian has been at the forefront of British business, up to board level, for more than three decades. Her success led to her becoming a government adviser on trade and industrial strategy.

Now, as a recognised Chairman and award-winning Non-Executive Director – as well as a writer and speaker on leadership – she uses her vast experience to train, mentor and advise today’s business leaders and those of tomorrow.

She is the founder of Board Mentoring, the Chairman of UK Coaching, has been highlighted in the Sunday Times Non-Executive Director Awards for her business acumen and is a pioneer in advancing the role of women with business. She was recently appointed as Chair of the Senet group, working with CEOs to promote responsible gambling.

In the 1980s, Gillian launched the award-winning and highly profitable Next Directory. During the following decade, she transformed the brand and profitability of Avon Cosmetics. And as one of the MDs at Royal Mail in the early 2000’s, she helped to kick-start the transformation and culture change of the business and its return to profitability.

Gillian has also been a key executive in companies such as Marks & Spencer, Boots, Avon Cosmetics and Littlewoods, has completed two turnaround roles as a CEO, led buyout bids and is a highly experienced leader within corporates, private equity and founder-owned arenas.

Through her global work with Board Mentoring, Gillian matches experienced Directors with CEOs and CFOs, and helps executives navigate their career paths by ensuring they are board-ready.

At UK Coaching, Gillian has been instrumental in harnessing the power of sport and coaching to increase leadership diversity, drive social inclusion and transform performance through health and well-being.

Gillian utilises her board experience within retail, energy, technology, leisure and insurance to help leaders achieve their ambitions and transform their businesses. She is currently writing A Mentor’s Guide To Leadership Success on how women and under-represented groups can succeed in business.

Joseph Krant bio

Joseph started his career more than thirty years ago at Pierson Heldring & Pierson, followed by a move to Slater Walker Europe in 1972. In 1973 Slater Walker acquired Kempen & Co, the Dutch Investment Bank. 28 years later, after a very successful period characterised by strong growth and a high profit level, Kempen & Co was acquired in December 2001 for approximately € 1 billion by Dexia (the Franco-Belgian financial services group) and was merged with Labouchere (a retail bank already part of Dexia bank). At the end of 2002, after having continued to manage the two banks as CEO under the name Dexia Bank Nederland, he decided to resign.

However, always looking for new challenges Joseph decided to found Catalyst Advisors with (his former colleague and partner at Kempen & Co/Dexia) Herman van Everdingen. Apparently, there was/is a great need for independent advisors, with an extensive experience in deal making and familiar with the process of mergers and acquisitions. Over the past 12.5 years he has managed Catalyst Advisors with great pleasure and has completed many successful transactions.

Tracy Lewis bio

After a successful career in fashion retail, Tracy joined private lingerie business Eveden in 2003, bringing in minority PE backing in 2006 to support business expansion. She devised and led a highly successful brand and international expansion, culminating in a trade sale to Japanese lingerie giant Wacoal in 2012. Following this success, Tracy’s achievements were acknowledged both Nationally and in the Midlands by EY as a recipient of Entrepreneur of the Year awards and by the BVCA as CEO of the year and exit team for the Midlands.

The following four years saw Tracy continuing to head up the autonomous Wacoal Europe division, expanding the reach of the UK designed portfolio, launching the brand design of Wacoal lingerie for the western consumer, and becoming a female spokesperson for the business across the East. During this time Tracy also held Non-Executive positions in both the not for profit and PE backed beauty sectors.

Tracy continued as CEO until 2016 and after a period acting as a board advisor to support the transition, she left to focus on a cross sector plural career and to further her volunteering and mentoring interests.

Since 2016, Tracy has held the position of NED & Chairman of RemCo for AIM listed Staffline Group Plc, the UK’s leading outsourced workforce and skills provider. In 2017 Tracy moved from NED to Executive Chair of PE backed, ITG, the dynamic and highly respected leader in the Tech-led Marketing industry and also joined the board of the multi award winning, high growth lingerie brand, Bluebella.

In addition to her various Board responsibilities, Tracy is involved in several mentoring initiatives, primarily focused on women in business and she also enjoys volunteering in areas related to youth employability and business skills development.

Further Information

John Lloyd
Chief Marketing Officer
ClearlySo
E
: john.lloyd@clearlyso.com
T: 0207 490 9520

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ClearlySo advises Tonik Energy on securing £13 million capital investment

ClearlySo advises Tonik Energy on securing £13 million capital investment led by Japan-based Mitsui and Co., Limited.

London, United Kingdom ClearlySo, Europe’s leading impact investment bank, announced today that it has advised Tonik Energy (the Birmingham-based independent supplier of renewable energy with nearly 100,000 members) (“Tonik”) and its sister company The Phoenix Works (provider of B2B and B2C green technology solutions) (“Phoenix”) on successfully securing a £13 million capital investment. With this investment, Tonik can accelerate roll-out of its integrated strategy to combine affordable energy supply with renewable and energy saving technologies including solar power, electric vehicles and battery storage.

The investment has been funded by Mitsui and Co., Limited (“Mitsui”) and existing investors, with Mitsui taking a strategic minority stake in the business. Mitsui is an integrated trading and investment company headquartered in Tokyo, which has invested in the group as part of its strategy to expand decarbonised, distributed and digitalized downstream energy business.

Despite the combination of extremely challenging conditions in the UK energy supply market (which has led to some other independent suppliers ceasing trading), regulatory interventions in the energy sector and wider political and economic uncertainty generated by Brexit, ClearlySo assisted Tonik in engaging with Mitsui and supported the management team in structuring and completing this investment round. Mitsui’s investment in Tonik also evidences the growing investor appetite for dynamic, market-leading and high impact businesses and how this investor appetite continues to become more global.

This Tonik announcement comes on the heels of other recent major advisory and capital raising mandates completed by ClearlySo in the renewable energy supply and energy management sectors. This includes recent Series A capital raises for Bulb Energy and Upside Energy that saw several mainstream institutions investing. It also evidences ClearlySo’s track record in closing larger transactions for impactful organisations, following ClearlySo successfully advising the HCT Group on securing a £17.8 million funding package in June 2018. This trend reflects the deeper institutional investor appetite for – and ability to invest in – high impact businesses that can generate commercial returns.

Chris Parsons, head of investment banking at ClearlySo, commented: “We are very proud to have worked with the Tonik and Phoenix teams and to have helped them successfully secure this significant investment. We believe that Mitsui will deliver significant value to Tonik and Phoenix as their strategic partner and investor. Market conditions have made this a challenging transaction to complete but this investment endorses Tonik’s track record, strategy, high quality management team and unique attributes.”

Ends

Notes to the Editors

About ClearlySo

ClearlySo is Europe’s leading impact investment bank, working exclusively with enterprises and funds delivering positive social, ethical, and/or environmental impact as well as financial return.

Originally founded in 2008, ClearlySo has helped more than 130 clients raise more than £248 million in impact investment from its extensive network of high-net-worth individual and institutional investors.

ClearlySo is headquartered in London.

Further Information

John Lloyd
Chief Marketing Officer
ClearlySo
E
: john.lloyd@clearlyso.com
T: 02074909520

READ MORE

ClearlySo publishes new report on impact investment

ClearlySo has published a new and FREE report on impact investment, reflecting on the last 15 years in the space. 

Despite the hype of the past 15 years, impact investment remains a microscopic proportion of global assets under professional management. That said, impact investment does appear to be gaining significant momentum.

This new report from ClearlySo assesses the historical background of the movement, including the unintended consequences of government subsidy and intervention, as well as the underlying trends that appear likely to accelerate its global growth. At ClearlySo, we believe that this momentum is being driven by the following key market dynamics:

 – The entry of mainstream pioneers drawn to the prospects of outsized market growth
 – A generational shift in client demand
 – Corporate success stories capturing public attention
 – Pressure from influential groups delivering increasingly constructive impact-related initiatives

To download the FREE report, click here.

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