Female Founders in Climate Series
AN INTERVIEW WITH ALBA FORNS, CO-FOUNDER OF CLIMATIZE
This week, we’re kicking off a campaign in honor of Women’s History Month to highlight awesome female founders working in the climate finance space. Learn how Alba is creating the people’s financial network for climate action.
By Briana Tang
March 9, 2022
Would you believe Alba when she tells you that you can make money while creating a positive environmental impact? Climate action doesn’t have to be all about sacrifice - it can be an opportunity! The problem is, people feel taking climate action is hard, expensive, and time intensive.
Climatize makes taking climate action easier than ever. Alba’s company enables consumers to start investing easily and automatically in clean energy projects from as little as spare change. As the investments grow, consumers can earn NFTs, incentives, and achievements at their favorite sustainable brands.
Climatize’s projects are centered around social and environmental impact. They focus on helping low, middle income, and underserved communities decrease power costs, reduce local pollution, create jobs, and build community wealth.
As the Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Climatize, Alba has a lot of great insights to share about her time working in the climate fintech space. We had the opportunity to hear more about her experience as a female founder in this industry.
Hi Alba! We couldn’t be happier to feature you and your company during March! Could you begin by telling us the story of how your company started? Where did the idea come from?
In 2019, my co-founder Will and I joined the Global Climate strikes in Barcelona. We looked out over this sea of 100,000 people and felt hopeful and inspired, but also extremely sad because we knew everyone would go home the next day with nothing truly changed. So, we held onto that hope and started looking for ways to turn that collective energy into tangible impact. That’s how Climatize was born!
I love how your passion for advocacy helped drive you to build your company. Could you expand more on how your company is leading the fight against climate change?
We are on a mission to decarbonize, decentralize, and democratize the energy transition. We are building the people’s financial network for climate action.
Using the growth rates of similar consumer fintechs, Climatize can invest over $2B per year in just spare change by Year 10. Those investments in clean energy will avoid almost 60 million tons of CO2, which is equivalent to planting 1 billion trees or not burning over 6 billion gallons of gas.
This sounds like a great initiative! It’s interesting how so few realize that climate-positive investments are an impactful way of fighting climate change. I’m sure you’ve had a lot of challenges and good memories since founding Climatize. What would you consider your proudest moment so far?
Last year we were featured in several Spanish newspapers. My grandad bought many copies and keeps them as a memory. At that time I was living abroad and seeing a picture of my grandad reading our story with a big smile and full of pride means a lot to me.
I’m so glad to hear that your grandad supports Climatize - it’s clear he takes great pride in what you’re doing. As a female entrepreneur, what is something you wish people knew?
The fact that female-led startups only received 2.3% of total VC funding in 2020. Becoming a female entrepreneur is an uphill battle, and it's clear the data speaks by itself.
Luckily, we’ve got each other’s back! I have met amazing women who are disrupting the energy sector and joined organizations where female founders support each other. There’s also a growing number of VCs that give priority to female-led companies and those with gender and culture-diverse teams. We are making huge progress, but we need to continue pushing to gain ground in a male-dominated industry.
It’s great that you’ve met and been supported by so many other amazing women in this space! Is there an organization that you’d like to shout out for supporting you along the way?
Venture For ClimateTech accelerator (by NextCorps, NYSERDA and SecondMuse). Shoutout to Jacqueline Ros Amable, she’s just amazing! Jackie, thank you for being there for us and for your ongoing support.
Climate Lightning Round
Moving on to the Climate Lighting Round, where we rapid-fire climate-related questions at you!
What’s your favorite climate tech or topic?
Low greenhouse gas transport.
Wind, solar, or hydrothermal - which are you most excited about?
Very cliché, but solar. Funnily, my name means sunrise.
That’s incredible, what a coincidence! Last question, what is your favorite book or resource about climate that you wish everyone knew about?
And that’s all for today! Thank you so much Alba for your time - it was so great learning about Climatize and hearing about your thoughts as a female founder.
Clearly, there’s a lot of potential in the climate fintech space. The biggest takeaway from Alba’s interview? Climate action doesn’t have to be complicated. Taking action can be as simple as investing your pocket change each week.
Thank you, Alba, for sharing your experience! Stay posted for Friday, where we’ll hear from Parinda Darden, Co-Founder of Wildgrid.
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