As investors, we believe in investing in solutions that matter. As women, we care about the kind of world we'll leave for our children. As sensible people, we must support solutions to help us get out of the climate crisis - now!
This urgency led us to get in touch with Katapult this summer to explore the possibility of investing in their new Katapult Climate Fund, which selected ten out of 1000 global startups that are on the pathway to bring scalable solutions to the most pressing climate challenges.
As Katapult has ample experience in accelerating and investing in impact startups, we - a syndicate of the female investors in the WIN Network, wanted to join this exciting opportunity and invest in climate solutions while reducing risk by investing together.
In collaboration with Katapult and our partner-in-law, Kvale Law Firm, we held 3 Q&A sessions with more than 30 women, about investing in climate tech. We showcased the Katapult model in our Oslo Innovation Week event on the 29th of September.Several of the members in our network were interested in learning more about Katapult and potential investment opportunities. But unfortunately, we learned that we could not invest in Katapult after all.
So, why did we not invest?
There are rules to protect people who don't qualify as professional investors from locking up their money in risky ventures. So even if we could pool in the minimum investment amount set by Katapult of 1 million NOK, these protection mechanisms stopped us from participating.
To be considered a professional investor, one must have at least 500 000 euros in financial capital, or had at least ten larger transactions per quarter the last year, or one must be working in the financial industry. Unfortunately, we did not meet the criteria and were left disappointed and full-pocketed, but protected.
We were also left wondering if it isn't time to update these regulations so more people can take part in wealth-building activities, like investing in seed funds, while still being somehow protected from losing all their money. As the innovation economy takes over, more people are getting informed about risk investments, which are necessary to push forward innovative solutions. We, the members of the WIN Network, definitely educate ourselves through WIN-Learn To Invest In Startups programs and Money-Masterclasses.
What are our thoughts after this process?
Although we were disappointed about the outcome, we are incredibly proud of the WIN investors, eager to learn about investments in a new asset class in climate-related solutions. We saw their interest, listened to their thoughtful questions, and saw their willingness to put their money on the table to support early-stage companies on a mission to save the world (literally!).
So even though we did not invest, we learned a lot; we had stimulating conversations and built competence and community.
What will we do now?
This learning process has been a great motivation for our work going forward, so we will continue to build our community of thoughtful women through events and meetings. In addition, we will continue to build competence through our digital library and Startup-Investment courses.
And we will explore more exciting opportunities to invest where our values are, together.
Thanks to all that showed up to this opportunity and to Katapult and Kvale for helping us understand its nuances.