Australian climate technology company Rumin8 has welcomed $7 million in funding from domestic and international climate impact funds, as it develops the next generation of feed supplements to reduce methane emissions from livestock.
US-based Prelude Ventures and the Aware Super Sentient WA Growth Fund, managed by Australian-based Sentient Impact Group, have contributed the equity funding. For both entities, investing to provide scalable solutions to address climate change while delivering financial returns is core to their mission.
Rumin8's lead product replicates the methane reductions of red seaweed, or asparagopsis, but instead of harvesting from the marine ecosystem, the plant's methane busting bioactive is manufactured and transformed into a scalable, stable feed supplement in Rumin8's quality-controlled laboratories.
"Livestock contribute an estimated six per cent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions through methane production. If we can reduce those emissions - and our research is demonstrating that we can - it has a big impact, not just on the planet, but also on the long-term sustainability of the world's livestock industries and the rural communities which rely on them," Rumin8 Managing Director David Messina said.
Rumin8 recently concluded highly encouraging sheep trials which demonstrated methane reductions of up to 95 per cent, with no residues detected in 80 independently analysed samples.
In addition, Rumin8 is confident that there will be productivity benefits - increased growth rates and milk production - for farmers who use Rumin8 products.
Rumin8's unique manufacturing process will enable its livestock feed supplements to be packaged into a liquid, an oil and, a solid and slow-release formulation making distribution to the livestock more efficient and effective. Furthermore, as a pharmaceutically-developed product, Rumin8's products are low cost, scalable, and repeatable.
"Aware Super and Sentient, through the Growth Fund, and Prelude have invested in Rumin8 as they want to accelerate the development of Rumin8's products to make a real difference to global emissions," Mr Messina said.
Aware Super Chief Executive Officer Deanne Stewart said the fund was delighted to have invested in Rumin8 through Sentient.
"Our 50,000 West Australian members will be proud to know that a portion of their retirement savings is invested in Rumin8 - one of Western Australia's most innovative climate technology companies," Ms Stewart said.
"We manage around $5 billion in retirement savings on behalf of our West Australian members, and investing in an exciting, innovative business like Rumin8 is not just great for the strong, long-term returns it can deliver for our members - it's also directly tackling the biggest global issue of our time."
Rumin8 is Prelude Ventures' first investment in an Australian company.
Prelude Ventures Managing Director Mark Cupta said Rumin8's ability to create a significant and lasting impact on the livestock industries' emissions made it a compelling proposition to invest.
Sentient Impact Group CEO Oliver Yates said: "Rumin8's potential environmental impact is hugely appealing, but as an innovative new business in Western Australia, it's also likely that it will deliver clear social benefits through job creation and development of new industry. This is central to the mandate of the Growth Fund we manage for Aware Super and more broadly to our impact mandate as a business."
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