Hannah-Mei Andrews, investment principal, OCGI Climate Investments is one of our Top 50 Rising Stars in corporate venturing for 2023
As a strong environmentalist, Hannah-Mei Andrews, investment principal at the UK-based private equity firm OGCI Climate Investments, was convinced startup innovation would be the way to build a better future.
“I previously worked in government cybersecurity at BAE Systems, a role and company that I loved. But what kept me awake at night was the climate crisis and my belief that innovation was the key to solving it. But although I wanted desperately to contribute, I didn’t know where to start,” says Andrews.
Andrews started by working with climate tech startups. “It was a challenge shifting from very different industries and it took me a while to feel comfortable from a technical and subject matter perspective, but I overcame this steep learning curve by putting myself out there at conferences and immersing myself in this experience,” she says.
“Since joining OGCI Climate Investments five years ago, I have learned so much about the climate tech sector, though I don’t think I’ll ever consider myself an expert – there’s always more to learn,” she adds.
Operating since 2017, OGCI Climate Investments joins together innovators, governments, and heavy emitting corporates to fund measurably impactful climate-related solutions to reduce CO2 emissions in the most GHG-intensive sectors. There are now 30 portfolio companies in its first fund, which invests into early-stage technologies and projects. “Investment seemed key to catalysing the potential of climate innovation, and the Climate Investments’ model drew my attention as it provides a rapid avenue for acceleration,” says Andrews.
Highly valued by her colleagues and the wider climate investing community for her diligence, active networking and external presenting, her boss, Joshua Haacker, chief investment officer, points out that she is also in high demand by portfolio companies.
Andrews says her biggest successes so far have been helping portfolio companies raise significant rounds. “It has been exciting to see that growth,” she says.
“One piece of advice I would give to individuals starting in the industry,” says Andrews, “Be curious, ask a lot of questions and learn from your founders as they are the experts.”
See the rest of our Top 50 Rising Stars for 2023 here.