The Climate App (TCA) was founded by NASA Research Scholar, Sam Naef, who has now turned his attention from space to land. This dynamic and passionate group of volunteers are launching a carbon-tracking app to tackle the climate crisis. The app is a social platform where you can showcase your environmentally positive behaviours. In turn, positive peer-pressure will incentivise and encourage behaviour change amongst your social circle.

The Challenge: Back in August, the team launched their £20,000 crowdfunding campaign in order to make the app a reality. Sam approached Sussex Innovation having been contacted by Kelly McDonald and Hannah Howes from the Catalyst Team. At this point, there were two weeks remaining of the campaign, and over £10,000 of backing yet to be raised! Our challenge was to support TCA in reaching this goal.

Our Solution: With the supervision and support of our PR & Communications Advisor, Joseph Bradfield, we created a strategy focused on contacting high value contributors. This included outreach to ethical investors and journalists. Further, we promoted the ‘Organisation Partnership’ reward tier, by contacting sustainable product brands who would be interested in receiving marketing and partnership opportunities in return for contributing to the campaign. Calling upon our network of contacts, we reached out to the Sussex Sustainability Research Programme, who shared the campaign with likeminded members of the University community in their weekly funding newsletter.

The Outcome: The campaign goal of £20,000 was achieved days before the deadline. Sustainable and ethical wellbeing brand, Ancient + Brave, have partnered with TCA for the future and generously donated £1,000.

“Sussex Innovation Centre is full of enthusiastic, knowledgeable people that have been able to share the vision of The Climate App and help us succeed in our crowdfunding campaign. Their links to industry and having a targeted approach to achieving goals has been very beneficial. It’s been great working with them, and I hope to much more in the future!” – Sam Naef, founder of The Climate App

What’s Next? Having already exceeded their crowdfunding goal, the next step for TCA is to hire developers to create the beta app within the next four months. Sussex Innovation’s CEO, Nigel Lambe, and Head of Programmes, Claire Pasquill, have met with Sam to discuss strategy going forward, and we have made introductions to several other interested parties from our community.

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