Southern Company-incubated API company enabling on-demand carbon offsetting
Southern Company, via its technology incubator, has closed a deal to spinout Cloverly, the leading Application Programming Interface (API) for carbon offsetting. Cloverly announced the closing of the successful $2.1 million seed round in June and Southern Company retains a minority ownership stake in the company.
The funding round was led by Tech Square Ventures with the SB Opportunity Fund (SoftBank) as well as Circadian Ventures, Knoll Ventures, Panoramic Ventures, and SaaS Ventures participating as other major investors.
The deal is further evidence of Southern Company’s status as a leader in investment in, and development of, innovative energy solutions. Cloverly began as an employee idea for improving customer adoption of renewable energy and carbon neutrality product offerings. Recognizing a market opportunity beyond utility programs, the team of entrepreneurial employees designed a new approach with new technology for delivering carbon offsets and quickly found customers in the e-commerce space.
“Our employees place customers at the center of everything we do. Whether that’s in the form of continuous improvement for delivering electric and gas service or innovating around ‘what’s next’ in the energy transition, we are always thinking about ways to create value or curate a better customer experience,” said Chris Cummiskey, Chief Customer Solutions officer at Southern Company. “That is how Cloverly was born – employees taking initiative to build a better way for customers to offset their carbon footprints. We’re incredibly proud of Cloverly’s successes so far and look forward to working with the company and its new investors in this new phase.”
This investment in Cloverly bolsters Atlanta’s growing innovation ecosystem and further demonstrates the momentum behind technology start-ups tackling decarbonization. Decarbonization remains a major focus of Southern Company’s in light of the company’s stated long-term goal of net zero GHG emissions by 2050. Decarbonization across the Southern Company system generation fleet has accelerated from a 34% reduction in 2018 relative to 2007, to a 44% reduction in 2019 and a 52% reduction in 2020 – Cloverly is an example of how Southern Company is taking decarbonization tools to customers within our system’s footprint and beyond.
The Cloverly API effectively mitigates the negative environmental impact of common, carbon-emitting activities in real time, on an automated, per-transaction basis. Using inputs from an organization's existing data, it calculates the amount of carbon emitted and purchases the appropriate amount of carbon offsets to neutralize the emissions. In addition, Cloverly uniquely offers consumer-facing touchpoints (i.e. in e-commerce checkout) for companies that want to provide their customers with the option to support their sustainability efforts.
Cloverly calculates and offsets emissions from e-commerce, financial transactions, commercial air travel, fleet transport, supply chain operations, energy consumption, and more. Since launching on Earth Day in April 2019, Cloverly, in partnership with their brand partners, has offset over 55 million pounds of carbon.
Cloverly also announced the appointment of Jason Rubottom as Chief Executive Officer. Rubottom succeeds Founder and CEO Anthony Oni, who will transition to an advisory and board role with the company.
“The fight against climate change has never been more important,” said Rubottom. “Cloverly is reshaping the way we approach sustainability, proving that innovation in tech can actually have an incredible, lasting impact on our planet. With the support of our investors, and with our passionate team, Cloverly is well positioned to lead the way to a low-carbon future.”