Cementing a greener future: Why we’ve invested in Alcemy

July 5, 2024

The cement industry is a cornerstone of modern infrastructure, yet it casts a heavy environmental shadow, responsible for an estimated 8% of global CO2 emissions. To put this in perspective, the cement sector’s emissions are more than three times those of the aviation industry each year. We need to mix things up!

Traditional cement production practices are highly carbon-intensive, largely due to the significant energy required to produce clinker, the key binding component in cement. As the world races to combat climate change, it’s clear that the cement and concrete industry must evolve to support sustainable development. This is where alcemy steps in.

The problem

Cement production is notoriously difficult to decarbonise due to the chemical processes involved in creating clinker. Traditional methods consume large amounts of energy and result in substantial CO2 emissions. The industry has long grappled with finding a balance between maintaining the quality and strength of cement while reducing its environmental impact.

Measuring cement quality on the alcemy app.

alcemy’s innovative solution

alcemy, a Berlin-based deeptech startup, offers a groundbreaking approach to cement production. Utilising advanced AI and machine learning, alcemy’s platform predicts and controls the quality of cement and concrete, allowing producers to significantly reduce clinker content without compromising on quality. This innovative solution can lead to up to a 65% reduction in CO2 emissions, revolutionising the cement industry.

alcemy’s AI-driven software provides real-time insights throughout the clinker production process and at ready-mix concrete plants. By enabling producers to lower the clinker content incrementally, alcemy’s technology facilitates a gradual and sustainable transition towards low-carbon cement production.

alcemy founders Robert Meyer and Leopold Spenner.

Why we believe in alcemy

  1. A visionary team: Founded by Leopold Spenner and Dr. Robert Meyer in 2018, alcemy boasts a team of experts dedicated to transforming the cement industry. The founders’ vision is to usher the cement and concrete sector into a new, digital, and greener era. Their commitment to sustainability, combined with their technological prowess, positions them as leaders in this critical industry. As Leopold Spenner puts it, "With our partners, we are committed to reducing the carbon footprint of cement production and leading the industry towards a sustainable future."
  2. Proven impact and market traction: alcemy has demonstrated significant impact and market traction. Their technology is already deployed in one-third of all German cement plants and over 40 ready-mix concrete plants, with promising results in reducing emissions and production costs. alcemy’s recent partnership with Spenner and their upcoming deployment in Titan America’s Florida plant underscore the scalability and effectiveness of their solution​​​​.
  3. Strong business model: alcemy’s business model is robust, with impressive margins and a growing customer base. Their AI platform not only enhances the quality of cement but also optimises production processes, leading to substantial cost savings for manufacturers. This combination of environmental and economic benefits makes alcemy’s solution highly attractive to the industry​​.

The future

This $10 million Series A extension will support continued research and development and facilitate alcemy’s entry into new markets, starting with their collaboration with Titan America in Florida. The pure international scope for alcemy makes it an a great, scaleable solution that could set a new standard around how to transform legacy, heavily emitting industries into those with a clean, greener path forward. We at Norrsken VC are thrilled to support alcemy on their journey to revolutionise cement production, reduce CO2 emissions, and pave the way for a low-carbon construction industry.

Curious to learn more about alcemy? Visit their website: alcemy.

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