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HSBC and Google Cloud partner up for climate tech startup growth push

jijomathai – stock.adobe.com

Banking giant HSBC will work with Google Cloud-affiliated climate tech startups to help them access funding to support their future growth

Caroline Donnelly

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Published: 09 Feb 2024 14: 45

Google is teaming up with HSBC to make it easier for climate tech companies that run their infrastructure on the internet search giant’s cloud platform to access financial support.

The partnership will see members of the Google Cloud Ready – Sustainability (GCR-Sustainability) programme offered access to HSBC’s climate tech-focused finance team, as part of a push by the banking giant to deploy $1bn of climate tech finance.

“HSBC will seek financing options for companies within the GCR-Sustainability ecosystem, as well as facilitating connections with HSBC’s customer base,” the companies said, in a joint statement.

Launched a year ago, GCR-Sustainability is a validation scheme for climate tech companies that use Google Cloud to host their offerings, which are designed to help enterprises reduce their carbon emissions, improve the sustainability of their supply chains and identify climate risks.

Google said its goal is to increase the number of partners signed up to the programme over the next two years, and help more of them explore venture debt financing options with HSBC’s help.

Natalie Blyth, global head of commercial banking sustainability at HSBC, said solving the climate crisis means finding new ways to support green tech companies so they can scale-up.

“Partnerships and innovative financing solutions are key, especially during a period when investment in climate tech startups has fallen,” she said. “By combining financing support, cloud technologies and connectivity to partners across our combined footprints, we will help climate tech vendors accelerate their growth, and develop the solutions we urgently need at scale.”

Justin Keeble, managing director for global sustainability at Google Cloud, said accessing finance is a common struggle for many climate tech startups.

“The scale of climate challenge requires a global ecosystem of technology providers bringing solutions that drive impact. This is why we launched our Google Cloud Ready – Sustainability ecosystem which – one year in – includes leading climate tech companies,” he said. “Many of these partners need access to finance and we are excited to partner with HSBC to support firms key to climate action.”

One of the first beneficiaries of the collaboration is a company called LevelTen Energy, which specialises in the provision renewable transaction infrastructure for use by companies in the clean energy economy. According to the company, it has – to-date – facilitated over $5bn in clean energy transactions.

“We are proud to be a GCR-Sustainability-validated company and are looking forward to working closely with the team at HSBC,” it said.

Ross Trenary, chief financial officer of LevelTen, said the company is looking forward to working closely with HSBC to accelerate its future growth.

“This venture debt package will enable us to scale our platform, which provides transaction infrastructure for carbon-free energy buyers, sellers and financiers,” said Trenary.

“HSBC’s global reach aligns with our international presence, while giving us opportunities to connect with HSBC clients that are looking to achieve sustainability goals.”

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