CVCA New Member Profile: The Atmospheric Fund (TAF)
We’re continuing our member series on CVCA Central; profiling our members and providing insight into these invaluable organizations in our community.
The latest member we are excited to profile is The Atmospheric Fund (TAF).
Tell us about The Atmospheric Fund.
TAF is a regional climate agency that invests in low-carbon solutions through venture capital and project finance structures. Investments must be able to demonstrate a tangible link to direct emission reductions in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area but can be based anywhere. Supported by endowment funds totaling $100M, TAF advances the most promising concepts by investing, providing grants, influencing policies and running programs. TAF collaborates with stakeholders in the private, public and non-profit sectors who have ideas and opportunities for reducing carbon emissions. TAF is also a member of the Low Carbon Cities Canada network. TAF is based in Toronto, Ontario, and has 30 employees.
What is TAF’s focus?
TAF focuses on carbon reduction initiatives that generate social returns like improved health, new green jobs, urban resiliency, and contributions to a fairer society. They specialize in net-zero new construction, energy efficiency building retrofits, grid decarbonization, and electric mobility. We’re looking for field-tested and third-party verified technologies that target over 500,000 tonnes of carbon reduction over 20 years. We’re seeking market rate returns that will attract follow-on capital, and founders and operators who are interested in being partners for the long term. The projects and ventures we’re most excited about have market-transforming potential – those ideas that grow the sector ecosystem.
What is TAF excited about?
TAF is excited to announce a joint investment of $3.5 million in Kite Mobility, a growing Canadian startup that is scaling their “mobility as an amenity” service. Kite’s unique model offers electric vehicles, including electric cars, e‑bikes, and e‑scooters for rent or monthly subscription within a centralized sharing platform located directly in multi-family buildings.
Underground parking in multi-family residential buildings is one of the most carbon-intensive components of new construction and adds an average of $100,000 in capital costs per stall. Kite’s mobility-sharing solution can displace up to 10 parking spots per shared electric vehicle, allowing building developers to save millions in capital costs and ultimately improve housing affordability for residents.
Our group of mission-aligned impact investors chose to invest in Kite’s business because it inherently reduces urban transportation emissions, moves consumers away from traditional private car ownership to an equitable sharing economy, and reduces the amount of infrastructure required for private vehicle storage. Analysis by TAF shows almost 200,000 tonnes of carbon reduction potential over 20 years in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area alone.
We’re excited to see this unique model scale across the country.