Sydney-based single-use packaging free cleaning and personal care brand Zero Co has broken the record for Australian equity crowdfunding, while simultaneously raising $6 million from venture capital firm Square Peg.
Founded in 2019 by Mike Smith, Zero Co sells single-use plastic free products with packaging manufactured from recycled materials, including what it calls ‘Ocean Bound and Landfill Plastics’ or OBL for short.
After raising $5 million in crowdfunding in under seven hours, Zero Co is a great demonstration of how important sustainable packaging has become to consumers, and investors.
But, the company notes that there is still a long road ahead.
As Zero Co chief operating officer Sandy Morrow tells ProPack.pro, “Consumers are becoming even more aware of the impact of single-use packaging on the environment, but there is still a long way to go before we have reached the tipping point where consumers vote with their wallets and influence mainstream consumer brands to do the right thing.”
For businesses and brands trying to communicate their sustainability credentials, Morrow said, “Transparency of the supply chain and manufacturing process are far more important than top level credentials. Unfortunately, credentials are not all equal, and can easily be used to greenwash.”
Currently selling in Australia, the crowdfunding round invited customers to invest in the business through equity crowdfunding to fund its push to go global in 2022.
Zero Co founder Mike Smith said, “We’re so humbled by the support of our customers and everyday Aussies who have decided to invest their money in our audacious mission.”
“We’re looking to grow this business by expanding our product range, scaling our operations and launching globally so that we can eliminate single-use plastic from every kitchen, laundry and bathroom,” he said.
Smith also said Zero Co has implemented an Australian-first closed-loop supply chain where products are delivered carbon negative directly to customers’ doors.