We are excited to announce our investment in FlyORO, a startup on a mission to become the top supply chain integrator for Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) in the aviation industry.
Investible’s Climate Tech Fund invested in FlyORO’s USD 1.6m pre-series A round alongside Singapore-based Audacy Ventures. This marks the 22nd investment from the Climate Tech Fund in under 2 years, and our 11th investment (of 12) of 2023, bringing our calendar year to a strong and exciting end!
The aviation industry is committed to reducing emissions using 3 key alternative solutions – SAF, electrification, and alternative fuels like green hydrogen. While electrification and green hydrogen can only support short to mid haul flights, SAF has no limitation to flight range which leads to many commercial airlines looking to SAF to lower their emissions.
SAF is produced from sustainable feedstocks and is similar in chemistry to traditional fossil jet fuels; however, its usage results in a reduction in carbon emissions compared to the traditional jet fuel it replaces over the lifecycle of the fuel. It can be made from feedstocks such as cooking oil, non-palm waste oils, solid wastes and more. And, while SAF is more costly than traditional fossil jet fuel due to availability of the feedstocks and the continuing development of new production technologies, many airlines are committed to blending it with traditional aviation fuel to begin reaping the climate benefits.
Though SAF production remained low in 2022 (0.24Mt, accounting for 0.1% of the industry), airlines have demonstrated strong commitment by increasing SAF output fivefold over the past three years. The global SAF market is expected to surge with a CAGR of 47.7% from 2023-2030, reaching approximately USD 16.8 billion by 2023.
To meet the demand for more accessible SAF blending, FlyORO has developed a single modular blending unit called the AlphaLite. This unit is conveniently placed near or within airports.
In these investment notes, we will share insight into why we chose to invest in FlyORO, backing co-founders Jonathan, Genevieve and Joe on their journey to ride the emerging SAF wave.
Unique SAF investment opportunity that avoids the volatility of picking the producer and refiner.
As a climate tech fund with global reach, we see plenty of SAF investment opportunities. Almost weekly, we get to see ambitious founders creating SAF from cooking oil, converting food waste into SAF, and even capturing CO2 and turning it (along with other steps) into SAF. While we see a tremendous opportunity in the space, it gets harder and harder to pick in a growingly saturated market.
While most SAF activities relate to the production and refining of SAF itself, FlyORO is focused on the development of SAF supply chain or infrastructure improvements that can capitalize on various emerging and established producers and refiners.
AlphaLite offers a flexible, efficient, and energy-saving solution for scaling up SAF production.
FlyORO's single modular blending unit, AlphaLite, allows for flexible scale-up in SAF volume, enabling a deployment timeline of 6-9 months. This is in comparison to traditional blending tank construction that can take up to 3 years. This speedy deployment timeline allows customers to adapt their investment to market dynamics more efficiently, avoid a large upfront expenditure, and respond quickly to the changing demands of the SAF industry.
On top of its modularity, the AlphaLite system can recognize and accurately withdraw diverse synthetic blend components (biofuels, renewables) and Kerosene feed, ensuring meticulous control during the blending process. This precision is driven by data acquisition to create automated blending recipes that achieves the required ASTM D7566 specifications (blend product volume, fuel component type, and composition) within a batch cycle of 20-30 minutes. This offers FlyORO the flexibility to blend a wide range of fuel options while maintaining quality assurance. This adaptability supports scalability and collaboration with diverse airline partners, independent of brand preferences.
The world’s first AlphaLite system was launched in April 2023 in Singapore and is currently making its way to more airports in south-east Asia and Australia!
Meet the team!
Based out of Singapore is the clever team behind FlyORO. Led by CEO, Jonathan Yeo, with over 10 years of experience in oil and gas, on the founding team is also Genevieve Toh and Joe Ng.
Genevieve brings her background in investment banking and marketing in both B2B and B2C industries, while Joe brings over 15-years of technical experience in oil and gas, and aviation fuels.
We are very excited to see FlyORO’s technology take to the skies!