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Carbon Masters, a Bangalore based energy startup has raised an undisclosed amount from India’s first and World’s largest angel investor network; Indian Angel Network and Sangam Ventures a pure play clean tech venture fund. The round was led by IAN investors Nagaraja Prakasam, Mridula Ramesh and Karthik Chandrasekar from Sangam Ventures. Nagaraja Prakasam and Karthik Chandrasekar will join Carbon Masters as Board Members to strengthen the leadership team.

Established in 2012, Carbon Masters has pioneered the development of India’s first bottled bio- CNG brand Carbonlites. Launched in 2014, Carbonlites is bio-CNG produced from the biomethanisation of organic waste streams, diverts waste from landfills mitigating methane emissions, displaces LPG for commercial cooking, and other fossil fuels for transport and backup power generation.

Commenting on the announcement, Som Narayan Co-Founder, Carbon Masters said, “We are extremely thankful to Indian Angel Network and Sangam Ventures whose faith in our vision will take us a step closer to achieving our goals. Carbonlites can provide India with a lower cost, carbon neutral alternative to the use of fossil fuels. That it can also provide a more sustainable way of managing organic waste streams in Indian cities makes it a unique carbon mitigation solution. It will be invaluable in helping India achieve its climate change goals under the Paris Accord.”

The company is planning to utilize the funds in product developments, senior, marketing and engineering level hiring and project developments.

Nagaraja Prakasam, IAN investor and lead commented, “Carbon Masters is the first in the country to produce a branded bottled bio-CNG product unleashing the potential of bio-gas. Our portfolio company Saahas (Zero Waste) which manages 30 tons/day of Bangalore waste is to supply wet waste to Carbon Masters that will get converted to bio-CNG. This will power Saahas vehicles and another portfolio company Freshworld’s (Farm on eWheels) vehicles.  Carbonlites enables conversion of Bangalore waste to renewable energy that can be used both for commercial cooking displacing LPG and to power vehicles. The by-product of the process also produces, organic fertilizer which will be sold to Freshworld farmers forming a CIRCULAR ECONOMY. Thus, through our association with the company, we aim to help the company unlock the vast market potential for its products, possibly on a global scale.” As an active angel investor of IAN Impact, Naga has lead Uniphore, GoCoOp, Freshworld, Saahas, SP Robotic, Neurosynaptic, Nativespecial and serves in their boards”

The company has also entered into a partnership agreement with the Mahindra & Mahindra organisation whereby they are investing in building large scale waste to energy plants. The first such plant will be operational from July in Malur, Karnataka.

Karthik Chandrasekar, Founder & CEO, Sangam Capital Advisors said, “India has barely used its biogas energy potential and the sector has suffered from poor corporate and investor interest while European markets have saturated their potential. The Carbon Masters’ team is focused on developing marketing and distribution linkages under the CarbonLites brand between producers of biogas (and organic-fertilizer) – farmers, municipalities and agro-industries (lot of whom flare the gas) and consumers for gas and fertilizer in both rural and urban markets. We believe they have found the key to institutionalization of the biogas sector in India!”

Talking about the segment, Narayan further added, “The market for LPG in the commercial and Industrial sector is large and growing. India is the 4th largest market for LPG in the world. For instance, in Bangalore, there are 6000 restaurants and Hotels consuming on average 25kgs of LPG per day (54,750tons per annum). Our first plant in Malur will be producing around 1.5 tons per day ( 547 tons per annum )  giving us ample room to grow.”

Carbon Masters has recently won two Government of India tenders for their Carbonlites in a box product. Both tenders will involve waste to power as opposed to waste to gas for cooking.

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