It was the movie “An Inconvenient Truth” by a former vice president of the United States, Al Gore, which raised my awareness on global environmental issues and seriously made me conclude that we need to take action. As I grew older and became a parent I began to constantly think about how I could make meaningful use of “my time left” and what I could leave behind for my children.
As symbolised by the SDGs adopted at the UN Summit in 2015 and “Paris Agreement” at the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties (COP) which is responsible for discussing the international agreements on greenhouse gas mitigation, an international awareness of the significant and urgent issues facing the global environment grew stronger. However, there were many companies and organisations which did not take the necessary action, excusing themselves and calling such environmental actions as “propaganda,” which triggered in me a profound sense of crisis.
Some global companies have stareted to take painful and effective action even those in the IT venture business which I am familiar with, people started to “take action”; a legendary venture capitalist and green tech evangelist, John Doerr, donated 150 billion yen to a newly establish sustainability-related department at Stanford University and Bill Gates called for the establishment of a 130 billion yen fund namedthe Breakthrough Energy.
These actions woke me up to the reality of the challenges the words faces and it was at this time I came across the microalga, Galdieria sulphuraria.
Galdieria is a red alga which inhabits hot sulphur springs and has existed for millions of years. It can survive in harsh environments such as high temperatures, high acidity, high concentrations of CO2and in the presence of highly toxic sulphur oxides and nitrogen oxide. This microalgae can grow autotrophically in the presence of light and can grow heterotrophically with nutrients in the absence of light.
These characteristics enable large scale industrial-level cultivation at low cost.
Galdieria is able to selectively and throughly collect precious metals such as gold (Au) and palladium (Pd) from dilute metal solutions through adsorbsion to the cell surface displaying higher performance than existing technologies (ion exchange resins, activated charcoal, etc.).
In addition, the cell contentsof Galdieria include a variety of nutrients and useful substances, as is the case for the other microalgae, which can be applied to food products, cosmetics, dyes and other products.
In other words, Galdieria has the potential to contribute and provide a holistic solution to globally significant issues such as improving the efficiency of precious metal recycling at ‘urban mine’, eliminating enironmental and health risks in gold mines, overcoming food problems and reducing CO2 emissions.
We will challenge every day for realisation of a harmonious future among people, nature and the earth by harnessing the power of a unique microalga the mother earth has given a birth to.
At the same time, we aim to create an attractive and unprecedented corporate entity where each and every one of us can develop and flourish with a sense of responsibility and professionalism in each field.
We are a deep tech venture with a mission of “establishing an optimal ecosystem for the earth and all living organisms,” through achiving a circulating society by harnessing the power of a unique nature given extremophilic algae.
Our potential to contribute to achive some of the 17 SDGs is elaborated below.
We believe our environmentallysafe precious metal adsorbent can contribute to sustainability providing solutions to a wide range of environmental and social issues.
Of all others, the working conditions and risks faced by in artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM) in Africa, Asia and South America are at the top of our agenda.
People without proper knowledge of handling mercury, including child laborers,use their bare hands and evapouratee it with burners without wearing appropriate breathing apparatus . This results in serious health issues for workers.
In many cases people are forced to working at ASGM in order t support their family knowing the potential health risks.
In most cases areas that have been mined to exhaustion are deserted leaving serious mercury soil contamination which causes significant environmental damage as it enters the ground water The use of cyanide , a so-called legitimate method for gold extraction, requires a high initial investment cost and cannot be adopted at ASGM compelling workers to live in a negative cycle of poverty and environmental poisoning.
Along with the development of precious metal adsorbent derived from Galdieria, we have succeeded in developing a gold recovery process from ores that can be adopted by ASGMs. This new gold recovery process allows an ASGM operators to safely extract gold from ore without using mercury.
Using our technology, we aim to eliminate the cycle of environmental pollution by contributing to the sustainability of the people involved in ASGM in Southeast Asia, Africa, and South America.
After starting his professional career at Booz Allen Hamilton, where he worked for five years, Mr. Tanimoto moved to Silicon Valley and conducted international business expansion services to startups for six years. In year 2000, he moved back to Tokyo and founded Realcom, Inc., an enterprise software company and did IPO in 2007 at the Tokyo Stock Exchange. After leaving Realcom, Mr. Tanimoto assisted several entrepreneurs as an angel investor and a mentor.
He received an MBA from Keio Business School in Tokyo and was also an exchange student at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
Member of MENSA Japan and summited Denali in 2014.
After cultivating his career at PASCO (GIS) and IIJ (Network), Masakazu joined and spent eight years at Realcom, Inc. working with Tadashi Tanimoto.
He joined Galdieria in 2019 and now leads the company’s business development activity.
BS, International Culture, Hokkaido Tokai University.
Eri spent nine years as Postdoctoral Researcher and Research Scientist at the Environmental Response Research Unit RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science, Japan.
Postdoctoral Fellow in Plant Science, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta
Ph.D. in Plant Science, School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK
Mr. Okahashi is the founder and Managing Partner of Miyako Capital
He currently manages three funds consisting of $170M in assets and in more than 30 companies, mainly seed/early-stage, high-tech startups in Japan, the US, Taiwan, and Israel.
Before founding Miyako Capital, Mr. Okahashi worked with Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Venture Capital and the Boston Consulting Group. He was also employed at the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) and formulated various government policies to enhance entrepreneurship and develop venture capital investments.
Mr. Okahashi earned a Bachelor of Economics at the University of Tokyo and an MBA from Columbia Business School
Dr. Maru is the founder and CEO of Leave a Nest Group.
He founded Leave a Nest Co., Ltd. in 2002, which has become the leading science bridge communication company in Japan.
Dr. Maru is the technical advisor for Euglena Co., Ltd., one of the most successful algae technology company with $1bn valuation at Tokyo Stock Exchange Market.
He is also an innovator who has been involved in launching more than 78 startups. At the same time, he is holding the role as co-founder of Real Tech Fund and science evangelist of Drone Fund.
Dr. Maru earned a Doctorate degree at the Graduate School of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the University of Tokyo.
Galdieria, Co., Ltd.
2-4-2-709 Nihonbashi Hamacho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 103-0007, Japan
Tadashi Tanimoto, Representative Director and CEO
|Start of business||
September 9, 2015
|Date of establishment||
October 1, 2015
LVP Bld.2-106, 75-1 Ono-cho, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama 230-0046, Japan
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