Building Global Sustainability with the Power of Partnerships
The global supply chain was once viewed as an invisible machine operating harmoniously behind the scenes. But as the worldwide reach of the pandemic and escalating effects of climate change illuminate the fragility of this machine, this is changing.
Supply chains are critical to shaping the future. That’s why entrepreneurs around the world are sidestepping outdated supply chains and business models to create new paths to sustainability, from transforming carbon emissions into medical supplies to ensuring the safe delivery of lifesaving vaccinations at every step of their distribution.
Growing such seeds of ingenuity into global ecosystems requires purpose-driven entrepreneurs with transformational ideas to build partnerships with like-minded peers.
From CO2 to Medical Supplies
One emerging venture fighting climate change and advancing carbon neutrality is Twelve. Based in Berkeley, California, Twelve is pioneering “carbon transformation,” a technology for eliminating carbon emissions from the manufacture and distribution of thousands of petroleum-sourced products by recycling CO2 emissions into cost-competitive, carbon-neutral chemicals and fuels.
With Covid-19 vaccines and boosters critical to pandemic recovery, Twelve is taking on both the virus and climate change by challenging traditional methods of medical product manufacturing and supply-chain distribution. Tapping into external expertise, Twelve has teamed up with LanzaTech, a carbon-reuse technology company based in Skokie, Illinois, to help it transform CO2 emissions into polypropylene, a key plastic in such medical-field products as syringes, pipettes, and intravenous bags.
On the other side of the world is another local organization with global ambitions: Frontier Markets, a socially focused e-commerce platform based in Jaipur, India. Through its network of 10,000 female entrepreneurs, low-income consumers in rural communities can access high-quality, affordable goods and services that provide clean energy and digital connectivity.
Frontier Markets is now fighting the pandemic too—a challenge larger and more demanding of expertise than it could meet on its own—by launching the India Rural Access Coalition for Covid-19 Resilience with two other companies.
Frontier needed to train an additional 20,000 rural entrepreneurs to bring information, healthcare, personal protective equipment (PPE), and testing kits to one million households in rural India. To do so, it established partnerships with Vitargent, a Hong Kong–based biotechnology company, and EduBridge Learning, a workforce-development platform in Mumbai.
Two British companies, Mimica and SureChill, are now teaming up to tackle vaccine supply-chain challenges. With guidance from UNICEF, PATH, Pfizer, and AstraZeneca, the two partners are exploring how to create a safer, less wasteful, end-to-end vaccine temperature-management system.
By connecting SureChill’s refrigerators, which can keep the vaccine at stable temperatures even without power using Mimica’s temperature-sensitive indicators, they hope to provide quality assurance during the “last miles” after doses leave the fridge and are at risk of freeze damage from ice packs in cool bags.
A Global Network of Innovation
These emerging entrepreneurs are just a few member organizations of Unreasonable Impact—a collaboration between Unreasonable and Barclays that provides growth-stage ventures with the resources, mentorship, and global network these ventures need to address key global issues.
Comprising more than 200 growth-stage ventures in 180 countries, Unreasonable Impact’s global community supports some 125,000 jobs and cumulatively has raised more than $5 billion in funding and generated more than $3.8 billion in revenue.
Paul Compton, Barclays’ global head of the Corporate and Investment Bank and president of Barclays Bank PLC, said, “By supporting these entrepreneurs, we’re partnering with innovators who are addressing many of the world’s most pressing challenges. Through Unreasonable Impact, we’re given incredible insights into the future of these industries.”
Impact Squared, an extension of the Unreasonable Impact partnership, encourages greater collaboration among growth-stage ventures within its community. The Twelve, Frontier Markets, and Mimica partnerships all received Impact Squared grants to help amplify their collaborations and encourage future collaborations to scale their innovations in fighting the pandemic and climate change throughout the world.
“Impact Squared is truly unique,” said Compton of Barclays. “It’s enabling pioneering entrepreneurs from across the globe to focus their talent, collaborate, and share ideas with each other, and respond faster to address the ongoing impacts of the pandemic.” He added, “We know that the collective potential of these ventures has the power to change the world.”
Global change begins at the local level. For emerging entrepreneurs anywhere, scaling innovation depends on finding connections beyond their reach or field of expertise. With the creative fuel of funding and a network of like-minded partnerships, these entrepreneurs are bringing their innovations to life—changing the future of energy, sustainable living, and manufacturing and the supply chain—from one location at a time.
Register to watch the Unreasonable Impact World Forum and learn more about how you can join the journey.