Stuff has committed an initial $1 million to its new Stuff Forever Fund, which will be used to invest in start-up businesses that have a positive impact on the environment.
Stuff CEO Sinead Boucher says the fund is a natural extension of the company’s mission to make Aotearoa a better place.
“For some time now we’ve had a desire to build on The Forever Project’s excellent climate journalism, by finding ways to support smart people with great ideas who are committed to tackling environmental issues,” says Boucher.
“We will use our unrivalled reach into New Zealand communities to amplify the work of companies that benefit from the fund, so they can have an even bigger impact on improving our environment. Any proceeds generated will allow us to keep building and growing the fund.”
The fund has made its first seed investment in an innovative new Kiwi business called WildClean – the world’s first certified plastic-negative cleaning company.
It’s a direct to consumer business that offers naturally powerful, dissolvable cleaning powders in 100% home compostable packaging, and forever bottles made from up-cycled plastic.
“We have been so impressed by the co-founders’ unwavering commitment to removing plastic from the wastestream, and the effectiveness of the products. Every minor detail in the product and process has been carefully approached to maximise their positive environmental impact,” says Boucher.
WildClean co-founders Richard Shirtcliffe, Chris Mears and Dan Gentry are respected entrepreneurs with a passion for un-mucking the planet. Creating a plastic and carbon-negative business has had its challenges, but Richard Shirtcliffe says people need more easy and legitimate ways to reduce their household waste.
“We’re recovering polluters and we know how tough it is to figure out how to ‘do the right thing’, form a better eco habit, and make a dent in the global plastastrophe. We know people are time poor, and the options are all compromised. We’re tired of the relentless green-washing, and we know consumers are too,” says Shirtcliffe.
“WildClean’s made it simple to make a change for good. We’re taking plastic out of the wild, waste out of waste streams, and toxins out of your cleaners, so your home can have the clean, fresh whiff of good conscience.”
The WildClean team has big aspirations.
“WildClean isn’t a cleaning brand, it’s an impact brand with home cleaning just the start. We’re launching in Aotearoa, because per capita it’s one of the world’s worst plastic polluters – only marginally behind Australia – and as Kiwis that infuriates us.
“But our aspirations are global and broad. We plan to scale into the USA (where our supply chain is established), Australia and Europe over the next 18 months, tackling additional single-use-rife categories as we go.”