Scotch whisky Chivas has announced that due to the current global coronavirus outbreak, this year’s Chivas Venture $1 million fund will be distributed evenly amongst the 26 global finalists with immediate effect.
Now in its sixth year, the Chivas Venture gives away $1m in no-strings funding to startups who blend profit with purpose to have a positive impact on the world.
This year’s competition has seen 26 social enterprises selected from 26 countries, across five continents. The finalists – who were due to pitch for a share of the fund at a Global Final in June – will now each receive $40,000 in funding, which can be put towards creating positive change at a testing time for people across the globe.
In Scotland, Edinburgh-based Crover, which offers grain storage monitoring, has won an award.
Founded by Lorenzo Conti, Crover has created a small robotic device capable of moving within grain stores to monitor the condition of grains, with the aim of reducing waste and saving countless grain stocks each year.
Pernod Ricard chairman and CEO Alexandre Ricard said: ‘It is with great sadness that we have decided to cut short this year’s Chivas Venture competition due to the impact Covid-19 is having across the world.
‘Now more than ever, our world needs the passion and dedication of those who want to bring about positive change.
‘That’s why we have decided that each of our finalists should be provided with secure funding now, so they can continue their important work and continue to positively impact their communities in spite of these volatile conditions, which will be particularly challenging for fledgling businesses and the communities they serve.’
Other award winners include Okra Solar, a startup from Australia, that is giving access to energy and electricity to those who live off-grid, to Raizs in Brazil which connects organic farming families directly with consumers.
To date, the Chivas Venture has given away $5 million in no-strings funding to social startups who have positively impacted over 2 million lives across 50 countries – driving major change, including providing 34 million litres of safe drinking water to communities, recycling 1,300 tonnes of waste, helping over 2,500 farmers’ families out of poverty and funding over 75,000 days of education for women and girls.
To find out more about the Chivas Venture and to learn more about this year’s finalists, visit www.chivas.com/the-venture