Edinburgh biochar firm secures £1m investment to open first production facility


Edinburgh-based Carbogenics – the developer of proprietary technology that enhances the efficacy and applicability of anaerobic digestion – has raised more than £1m in investment to build its first production and R&D facility in Scotland.

The company turns difficult-to-recycle farm and paper waste which would otherwise go to landfills or be sent for incineration into a product called CreChar®.

The product is a carbon-rich, porous material that will help stabilise the performance of AD plants and enhance green energy production from food and farming waste. CreChar’s circular solution permanently sequesters carbon in soils helping to secure a Net Zero future.

The investment has come from a new lead investor Green Angel Ventures along with valued existing investors Scottish Enterprise and Old College Capital.

Based on successful lab and industrial trials, Carbogenics’ growth plan includes building its first production facility in Perthshire to enable the launch of CreChar into the UK anaerobic digestion market. It’s anticipated the facility will be operational by the end of Q1 2024. The company is also creating new roles across production, operations and business development doubling its size and is in the process of raising further debt and investment finance in the coming months.

Professor Ed Craig, CEO of Carbogenics, said the investment “will allow us to scale the business significantly, including building our first production facility, solidifying our customer base in the UK, and facilitating our European expansion plans.”

“As a Scottish born enterprise, we are delighted to re-invest back into Scotland, accessing the significant market opportunities presented across the UK and Europe where countries like Denmark aim to be 100% powered by biogas by mid 2030s.

“Carbogenics continues to innovate and as energy security joins sustainability as a key priority for the energy transition we believe the UK will grow its use of biogas from the current c1% and mirror its trading partners in Europe.”

Cam Ross, CEO of Green Angel Ventures, said:

“Green Angel Ventures invests exclusively in companies fighting climate change. Our 350 specialist angel syndicate members were attracted by the large potential for carbon impact with Carbogenics’ technology, and our Climate Change Fund was a natural additional investor. Professor Craig and his team have developed a process which should genuinely help fight the biggest challenge we need to tackle, and they have our full support.”

Kerry Sharp, Director of Entrepreneurship, and Investment at Scottish Enterprise said:

“Supporting innovators like Carbogenics to commercialise and scale is a priority for us.

“We are extremely proud to watch and help the company grow, and this new facility will be a real boon in terms of jobs, innovation and the ability to continue to pursue international markets.”

Andrea Young, Head of Investment at Old College Capital, said:

“We are delighted to support this investment round alongside Green Angel Ventures and Scottish Enterprise. Carbogenics’ is an exciting example of how University research can enable innovative solutions to tackle major climate and environmental challenges.”

CreChar® has a wide range of applications with Carbogenics focusing on its proven ability to enhance and stabilise anaerobic digestion and supporting significant carbon sequestration and fertilisation, locking away carbon for hundreds of years.

Founded in 2016, Carbogenics is a spinout from the University of Edinburgh. Staffed by experienced entrepreneurs, industrial practitioners, and world-class scientists with access to the University’s testing facilities and industrial partners, the company was a winner of the top prize in Converge as well as Shell Springboard in 2018.