Corporate venture companies don’t just invest in start-ups as part of their portfolio programs, but partner with other funds to drive innovation in science and technology further and faster. CM Venture Capital, headquartered in Shanghai, China, and a portfolio company of BTV, is one such example.
CM Venture Capital was founded in 2010 by decorated scientists and entrepreneurs Dr. Min Zhou and Dr. Patrick Berbon, and has become a key strategic partnership for BAT. The remit? To collaborate by channelling funds, driving innovation and delivering the best outcome for our portfolio companies. Together with partners Michelle Hua and Jean-Claude Pierre, who joined in 2015, the founders believe the world can be a happier, healthier and more sustainable place through better science, materials and technology. And they stand behind the passion, vision and breakthroughs of the innovators who make them happen, much like BTV does.
Juan M. Palacios, managing director of BTV, says:
“There’s significant synergy between CM Venture Capital and BTV, both with a razor-sharp focus on the power of science and technology to drive positive change. By working together, our fund objectives can accelerate the most ambitious ideas across markets to spark innovation and deliver the power of shared success.”
Dr. Min Zhou adds:
“Decarbonisation of our planet needs close collaborations across industries, value chains and countries, plus new scientific innovations. Since we’ve partnered with BTV, we’ve been able to support our founders significantly more than before, benefiting not just from additional funds, but bolstered expertise and experience. We share the same vision on investing for a sustainable future.”
Since the start of BAT’s partnership on Fund II over five years ago, CM Venture Capital has discovered and supported a string of innovative companies doing game-changing things in the spheres of science and technology, three of which are below.
UK-based Econic Technologies is tapping into the huge market potential for repurposed CO2 by transforming the often-criminalised element into functional products that can be applied to a raft of industries, including everything from automotive to construction and apparel, among others. CM Venture Capital, and BTV in turn, are continuing to help the company collaborate with manufacturers in China and the US to expand the reach of its sustainable products, helping not just with funding, but its ownable positioning to drive cut-through in the market.
Skysys in Shanghai is maximising the efficiency of sustainable new energy industries – from solar and wind to green and hydrogen – by offering smart drone solutions that negate the need for manual checks by human operators across vast sites. Again, CM Venture Capital didn’t just provide much-needed funding to get the idea off the ground – quite literally – but worked with its founder to develop the concept itself (scrawled on a napkin!).
Guofu Hydrogen harnesses years of experience from its passionate founder to build the infrastructure necessary to take hydrogen fuel – the future of green energy – to the next level. As one of the top three providers in China, the business has already gone global, with agreements to implement infrastructures in the Middle East, but CM Venture Capital worked alongside the business to go-to-market only after a decade of observation, studies and research.
By partnering with technologically inclined VCs like CM Venture Capital, BTV can expand its network further and distribute its funds wider to accelerate more founders and their innovative ambitions, helping the world become a better place more quickly. After all, there’s no time to waste.