Climate risk platform Cervest raises $30m in funding

20 May 2021

Iggy Bassi. Image: Cervest

The funding, which has been led by Draper Esprit, will finance the start-up’s expansion in the US and European markets.

Cervest, a UK start-up building a platform for assessing climate risks, has raised $30m in a Series A round.

The start-up’s climate intelligence platform uses artificial intelligence to analyse climate data. It is targeted at businesses and governments that need to make sense of climate and extreme weather data to assess risks and effects on physical assets.

The round of funding has been led by Draper Esprit alongside existing investors Astanor Ventures, Lowercarbon Capital and Future Positive Capital. Marc Benioff’s Time Ventures and Untitled, the venture firm by Magnus Rausing of Sweden’s billionaire Rausing family, also joined the investment round.

The funding will be used to push deeper into the US and European markets.

Cervest said its platform has been designed to collect data from public and private sources, such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the US and the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts.

It combines this data with machine learning to assess climate risks to physical assets or businesses and could help inform the insurance and financial services sectors around how they structure their businesses in the future.

The first product built on the platform is called EarthScan, which provides historical data going back 50 years and predictive insights. Cervest tips that the market for climate risk intelligence is worth $40bn.

“Climate volatility has thrown us into a new era where climate intelligence needs to be integrated into all decisions,” chief executive Iggy Bassi said.

“Organisations that fail to do so risk being blindsided by climate events such as the recent floods and fires in Australia, the droughts in Europe, and the winter freeze in Texas.”

Bassi added that decarbonisation remains vital but it is not the only necessary response to climate risk.

“To succeed, we need a complete and unified view of climate risk, simultaneously considering the impact of accelerating physical risks, alongside decarbonisation investments and adjacent transition risks as we build a low carbon economy,” he said

“This is exactly what Cervest will do, enabling everyone to become climate intelligent by making fully informed climate decisions.”

Jonathan Keane is a freelance business and technology journalist based in Dublin