In brief: Bill Gates’ $2bn cleantech VC fund bets on air con energy storage

Breakthrough Energy Ventures, founded by Bill Gates in 2016, raised $1bn for its second fund and $1.1bn for its first.

Bill Gates’ $2 billion-AUM cleantech venture fund has backed a company aiming to slash the energy consumption of air conditioning through energy storage technology. Breakthrough Energy Ventures was founded by Gates in 2016 to “invest in scientific breakthroughs that have the potential to deliver cheap and reliable clean energy to the world”, Gates said in a blog post at the time. BEV closed its second fund on $1 billion last year after raising $1.1 billion for its debut.

BEV led a $20 million funding round for Blue Frontier, a company that has developed an energy storage technology that reduces the electricity consumption of air conditioning by “up to 90 percent”, according to a press release from the firm. Other participants in the funding round include 2150 Urban Sustainability Fund, clean energy-focused VoLo Earth Ventures and construction company Modern Niagara.