Berti Investments is a young and inspiring environmental impact investment company that invests in growing, entrepreneurial, low carbon businesses in the UK. Their concept is clear; they focus purely on innovative, thought-leading organisations whose strategy is led by carbon reduction techniques and best practice methods; ensuring they have a positive impact on the environment.
The Berti Green Accelerator programme was launched in 2012 and attracted more than 80 companies to apply for investment and business support from all over the UK. These companies ranged from enterprises engaged in a variety of sectors. Applications came from online conferencing, social networking, bio char, community solar initiatives, large-scale renewables such as tidal and biomass and consultancies and service providers.
The inaugural funding round was incredibly successful and led to two of the winning companies being awarded with transformational funding to help grow and nurture their businesses. This year, the programme, in partnership with leading global investor Coller Capital, is busy searching for three UK low carbon companies whom they believe will help deliver their shared vision of creating a long-term positive impact on the environment. The process is shaped by three simple stages: an initial online application submission, pitching in a finalists’ selection event, then going in ‘Dragon’s Den’ style into a final pitch. The fortunate winning three companies will be awarded with a free 12 month mentorship programme from Coller Capital, and access to a £3M funding pool from Berti.
Shaping Sustainable Growth
It’s clear to see why the accelerator programme is popular, but it is by no means an easy ride. The judging criteria is strict, companies must be able to demonstrate long-term, sustainable growth plans that align with the programme’s impact-focused approach to investing. Many entrepreneurs lack the experience and knowledge about certain aspects of their business, such as financial or operational expertise. Berti Investments clearly recognise the restraints and dilemmas that many entrepreneurial businesses face, including barriers to capital and select networks, but also elite, hands-on support from experts.
Flying High: A Look at One of the 2012 Winners
Firefly Solar, specialists in Solar Energy Solutions were one of the 2012 winning companies. The funding has allowed Firefly to move from the start-up phase into a sustainable growth phase. Firefly received six months of first class business support and expertise from Hamilton Bradshaw Impact Partners, and £550k of investment from Berti Investments to help their business to the next level.