Services: Investment strategy, Investor Readiness, Angel Investment
Zero Petroleum, the British technology company that produces net zero synthetic fuels by recycling carbon dioxide and water, approached Raising Partners in 2020 with the seed of an idea and big ambitions.
Founded by Formula One engineering legend Paddy Lowe – formerly Chief Technical Officer at Williams Racing and Executive Director of the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 team – Zero Petroleum were raising investment to build a pilot synthetic fuel production plant in the UK, where its processes can be rapidly scaled. Alongside Paddy, Zero Petroleum was co-founded by Professor Nilay Shah OBE, Head of Chemical Engineering at Imperial College London, and one of the most prominent and influential chemical engineering authorities in the world.
Using a technological process akin to photosynthesis, renewable electricity produced from the sun, wind and other natural sources is used to recycle water and carbon dioxide. The result is the production of fully synthetic, fossil-free hydrocarbons – such as petrol, diesel, jet fuel, and plastics – with zero carbon emissions and contaminants. These alternative fuels can replace fossil fuels without the need to adapt distribution infrastructure or the design of vehicles. They are also crucial for industries in which electrification is not an option, including aviation, agriculture, and industry.
The Raising Partners team worked closely with Paddy and Nilay to help formulate the core investment strategy for the business, and supported the management of the raise through asset creation and investor readiness, ultimately leading to an investment of £200,000 from Raising Partners Angels including F1 legend, Damon Hill.
The investment will be used to bolster the engineering, sales and operations teams, and demonstrate the viability of synthetic fuels by securing more commercial partnerships.
Zero Petroleum’s ambition is to become the world leader in synthetic efuels technology and production, and this investment will help move them closer to this goal.
Also supporting Zero Petroleum is Innovate UK, which has provided a £64,000 grant for further research and development into process optimisation.
“We started work with Raising Partners in late 2020 and as a complete newcomer to the world of start-up financing it was fantastic to have the support and specialist expertise of Helena and Alex and the team in our first fund raise.
Ours is not the easiest sector in which to create traction so it was especially rewarding for all concerned that the target was ultimately oversubscribed and that Zero Petroleum took the unique position of first investment by the Raising Partners Angels syndicate.”
Paddy Lowe Founder Zero Petroleum
The first time we met Paddy and Nilay, their vision to replace fossil fuels with synthetic alternatives immediately struck a chord. Of course, their experience is second to none but they have identified a clear and achievable solution to lowering the carbon footprint of many areas of the transport sector and for us, as investors, we’re hugely excited about the impact they will make on the industry.
We worked directly with Paddy and his team to develop their fundraising strategy, before connecting him with investors within our Angel syndicate, which seeks out companies that are challenging the status quo and making a genuinely positive impact. We couldn’t be more thrilled to be making the syndicate’s very first investment in such an impactful and innovative company. Not only are they tackling a global problem but they absolutely represent the calibre of entrepreneurs that we want to support, having demonstrated great leadership and humility.
Helena Murphy Raising Partners Angels