Fifth Wall adds new partner as it seeks at least $ 200 million for new climate impact fund – TechCrunch
When it was launched almost three years ago, Fifth wall had a vision to leverage capital sponsors across the real estate development and construction industry to support the technologies the industry needed most.
This initial vision resonated so well that the company went from managing a $ 212 million fund to having approximately $ 1.2 billion in assets under management. He also realized that the investment vehicles they currently manage have a huge blind spot: climate-related technologies.
With this deficit in mind, the company set out to raise a new climate-focused investment vehicle with a target of at least $ 200 million, and enlisted a new partner to help invest that capital. .
Today, the company announced that Greg Smithies, a former BMW iVentures partner and longtime investor in climate-related technologies, will join the company to help Tyson Woeste invest the newly raised capital of Fifth Wall.
“A year ago real estate investors started asking questions about climate and sustainability,” said Fifth Wall co-founder Brendan Wallace. These questions were driven by three main concerns of commercial and residential real estate developers.
The first concern has come from financial investors who typically fund these projects demanding that developers pay more attention to low and no carbon real estate developments. Regulators became a second problem when elected officials at centers like New York and Los Angeles began enacting carbon neutrality laws requiring the decarbonization of real estate. And finally, clients who rent and buy space among real estate developers had their own demands for decarbonization, Wallace said.
And the technologies that are deployed have a much more technical bent than what some of the company’s existing portfolio was used to.
That’s why Smithies, former employee of Neuralink and the Boring Company and most recently in charge of climate investments at BMW iVentures, joined the company.
“What turns me on about this space is that there is so much fruit within reach. And there are $ 260 trillion in buildings, ”Smithies said. “The vast majority of them nowhere live up to modern codes. We’re going to have a much bigger opportunity focusing on the not-so-sexy stuff. “
Decarbonizing real estate can also make a huge difference in tackling global climate change. “Real estate consumes 40% of all energy. The global economy is unfolding on the inside, ”Wallace said. “Real estate will be the biggest consumer of climate technologies for no other reason than its contribution to the carbon problem. ”