Claim: The SVB Collapse is hurting Climate Tech Startups

From Watts Up With That?

Essay by Eric Worrall

h/t resourceguy; Apparently the SVB collapse has shaken the market, leading to increased due diligence.

Climate tech startups face ‘massive hole’ after Silicon Valley Bank collapse

Grace O’Donnell
Editor, Special Projects
Thu, April 6, 2023 at 8:37 PM GMT+10

When Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) suddenly collapsed in the second-largest bank failure in U.S. history, many startups and their VC backers focused on sustainability and tackling climate change sprang into action to secure their funds.

“There is a massive hole in that slice of the climate capitalization pie that’s missing,” Sophie Purdom, managing partner at Planeteer Capital, told Yahoo Finance at the recent Techonomy conference. “SVB did play this really essential role in the ecosystem because they were willing to take on technologically perceived riskier types of clients than maybe the bigger four or so banks were willing to mess around with. These tend to be smaller companies, smaller accounts, [with] higher risk premiums.”

And climate tech companies still have options to raise capital through equity and debt, though overall it will likely become harder for companies to get funding.

“What this bank collapse is going to do, hopefully, is increase the due diligence process of the investors into these VC-backed startups, which is going to continue to slow that funding,” Kyle Stanford, senior analyst of VC at PitchBook, told Yahoo Finance Live (video above). “It’s going to make it more difficult for these companies to raise capital even … than it’s already been.”

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In this case, surely increased due diligence is a good thing.

Silicon Valley Bank, which collapsed a few weeks ago, didn’t have an official risk officer for the 8 months between between April 2022 and January 2023.

I don’t think you have to be a financial expert to be concerned that such a prolonged failure to appoint a risk officer might be an indicator SVB were taking unwise risks with depositors money, and likely contributed to the collapse.