Powerflop: A cautionary tale for selling out your impact heart

Small Steps Vol. 46: Shell buy taints Powershop goodwill 💡; mining landfill for batteries 📱; and some women-led wins 🙌
December 9, 2021
Giant Leap

"The good news is that superstitious thought, or “magical thinking,” even as it misrepresents reality, has its advantages. It offers psychological benefits that logic and science can’t always provide: namely, a sense of control and a sense of meaning."

- Matthew Hutson, Author

Quick note

This is the final Small Steps for the year but look out for us again in early in 2022. Thanks for reading this year, we’ve loved writing for you. Wishing you a most relaxing holiday season.

What we’re thinking about

🔌The people vs. Powershop. Can you buy a better image? The latest outrage against Powershop, which announced it was being acquired by Royal Dutch Shell, suggests not. Shell is one of the planet’s biggest polluters and recently received a government order to cut emissions faster than their voluntary 2050 targets. Australians are voting with their feet, switching to alternative providers like Amber, while referral partners like Environment Victoria have cut Powershop loose. It’s a cautionary tale for impact companies, highlighting there’s a thin line between selling and selling out.

🔋 Circular circuits. With rising commodity prices for key minerals - lithium, cobalt, nickel - Bloomberg is cautioning batteries could see a price increase for the first time in over a decade. The problem starts with increasing difficulty pulling battery bits from the ground now that we’ve exhausted easy deposits, requiring three times more base material today to get the same amount of rare earth materials as a few decades ago. But here lies opportunity for circular economy startups like Nth Cycle, who have developed a way to extract rare metals from waste in a process dubbed “urban mining”, bypassing a lot of dirty mining and avoiding unnecessary waste.

👏 Women-led wins. Artesian announced it has raised the first $45m of a $100m fund to invest in women entrepreneurs addressing the needs of women. Meanwhile, ANDHealth announced a women-led investment committee aiming to launch the next generation of digital health startups. No doubt hoping to add to the growing (but still underrepresented) field of women tech billionaires who are leading the way.

Giant leaps

👌 Huge congratulations to Seer, who were the highest ranking MedTech startup on this year’s Fast Starters list. George Kenley, Co-Founder, also shared her experiences building a resilient mindset with the Upside Program.

👍 Driven featured on The Nightshift talking how to address the drop in Australia’s national mental resilience over the last few years.

💪 Amber Electric is on a roll, scoring a win at the APAC data awards.

New paths

🚗 Goterra is hiring a Driver

🛠 Sendle is seeking an Engineering Manager

💭Academy Xi is after a Talent Lead

🧻 Who Gives A Crap is looking for a Senior Project Manager

♼ Looking for a job addressing climate change? Check out Climate Salad’s job board.

🔥 There’s now 100+ more jobs on the Giant Leap Fund jobs board and more jobs at ethical companies on the global B-Work job board.

For the road

🌳 Carbon capture is rocketing around the globe. In 2021, more than 100 new projects have been announced and the global project pipeline for CO2 capture capacity is on track to quadruple.

⌚ In a win for wearables as a health platform, a major clinical study showed that fitbit pulse trackers can detect atrial fibrillation, a dangerous heart condition that’s difficult to diagnose without experiencing significant symptoms.

💪 B-Corp certification is rare in the fintech sector, as these businesses struggle to meet the criteria. But a black-owned US startup, SoLo Fundsm has defied the odds and achieved the qualification due to their model that directly targets underserved communities.

💊 Interesting podcast on how a customer-led approach is helping speed up clinical trials and bring new health products to market with Manuri Gunawardena, Founder of Healthmatch.

💰 The City of Melbourne is offering up to $200,000 in grants for their Social Enterprise Grant program. Applications close on January 14th 2022.

💸 Think And Grow’s annual salary guide is out, and once again has revealed a raft of interesting insights into what you can earn working for startup companies. One interesting insight: Over half of the companies offered Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) options. Executive roles generally held over $164,000 in options in a company.  

😱 Are we scared of Omicron? If Who Gives A Crap’s stock is any indication, not so much.

💣 What kids in the 1960s thought the world would look like in 2000.

😺 The value of being hungry and ready.

🐕 And comic book pets.

Further Reading

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