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2023 Year in Review – 11 Indian Green Startups Working for the Climate

As curtains draw to 2023, it is time to bring our year-end edition highlighting 11 Indian startups trying to solve climate problems. 

Speaking about climate problems, it is worth mentioning that 2023 will go down as the hottest year in 120,000 years, with extreme temperatures, wildfires, cyclones, floods, and droughts ravaging almost all parts of the world.

However, we are not here to discuss problems; instead, we focus on solutions and hope.

The year 2023 saw incredible work in terms of climate action – prices of renewable energy production going down, a surge in the sales of electric vehicles, restoration of the ozone layer, progress being made at the Amazon rainforests, and a call to ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels for the first time in a climate summit (COP28), among others. We have highlighted some of these things in our year-end reflections. 

While these are considerable achievements, there is still a lot to be desired for addressing climate change.

That’s where we have businesses and companies playing a part, and none is more important than our startups. With their innovative ideas and effective use of cutting-edge technologies, they are able to solve many climate challenges that large corporations often ignore. 

Let us look at 11 Indian green startups working for the environment and sustainability and have fantastic potential in the future.

(Like our previous editions in 2021 and 2022, Change Started compiles this green startup list from varied sectors.)


Founders: Devendra Gupta, Prateek Singhal and Vivek Pandey

Pune-based Ecozen has developed climate-smart deep-tech solutions for improving agriculture productivity and providing energy storage.

The company’s products include solar-powered pump controllers and solar-based cold storage solutions. The smart solar pump controller system provides emission-free irrigation. The Solar Cold Storage solution prevents food loss and reduces carbon emissions.

India is a leading producer of fruits and vegetables, which are highly perishable commodities if not stored properly. Therefore, farmers must either sell their stock immediately or depend on cold storage facilities located far from their produce. Ecozen Solar Cold Storage solution is a great relief as it increases the shelf life of perishable food items, thereby bringing more returns.

Additionally, these solar-powered products do not rely on grid power systems, which are unreliable in many Indian villages, helping farmers save costs. 

Starting in 2010, the climate-smart technologies of Ecozen have improved drought resiliency for smallholder farms, reduced food waste, and increased farmer incomes. In January 2023, the company raised $25 million in equity and debt capital in its series C round, which it seeks to use to expand beyond the agriculture sector.


Founders: Ananda Verma and Shailendra Tiwari

Bengaluru-based Fasal is an agri-tech startup that provides climate-smart solutions to small horticulture farmers, enabling them to become more resilient to the impact of climate change. The company’s tech-based solution provides farmers with irrigation alerts, farm-level forecasts, and pest and disease warnings, helping them improve productivity, reduce costs, and increase income.

The impact of climate change on agriculture is increasing with each passing day; from unpredictable rainfall patterns to soil degradation, farmers have to bear many risks. The IoT-based sensors and AI-based analytics by Fasal help farmers mitigate many of these climate and non-climate risks.

Starting in 2018, the company has made its presence felt in more than a dozen Indian states, serving thousands of farmers. In December 2023, the company raised $12 Mn in Series A funding, which it plans to use to expand its operations domestically and internationally.


Founders: Amit Bansal, Anshul Gupta, and Aashish Gupta

Gurugram-based Hygenco develops green hydrogen and green ammonia production assets for commercial purposes. 

Green hydrogen and green ammonia are vital in bringing about energy transition and ensuring a sustainable future. These elements will play a key role in decarbonizing various sectors such as fertilizers, refineries, steel, chemicals, transport, etc.

Founded in 2020, the startup made a considerable impact in a short period by signing an offtake agreement with Indian steel company Jindal Stainless to develop a multi-megawatt green hydrogen facility.

In addition, Hygenco has signed contracts with optical and digital solutions provider Sterlite Technologies and Saudi Arabia-based Al Jomaih Energy and Water. In October 2003, the startup received $25.4 Mn in funding.

Ishitva Robotic Systems

Founders: Sandip Singh and Jitesh Dadlani

Ishitva Robotic Systems is a Robotics company working on managing waste and recycling. The company leverages artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and the Internet of Things (IoT) to build solutions that help in waste material recovery and sorting.

Waste management is a global problem, with single-use plastic as one of the main culprits in damaging our natural ecosystems. A report by Minderoo found the world generated 139 million metric tons of single-use plastic waste in 2021, compared to 133 million tons in 2019. Each passing year, we produce an incredible amount of plastic waste, of which less than 10 percent is recycled due to inefficient waste management.

Starting in 2018, Ishitva Robotic Systems has launched multiple tech-enabled products, like SUKA AI-powered Air Sorting, YUTA AI-powered Robotic Sorting, and Netra AI Vision system, making sorting more efficient at different stages of the waste value chain.

As per Jitesh Dadlani, the co-founder of Ishitva.

“You need about 10-15 people to sort 1 tonne of plastic waste in about 8-10 hours. However, using our technology, a single machine can sort 6 tonnes of waste per hour.” 

Padcare Labs

Founder: Ajinkya Dhariya

Pune-based Padcare Labs provides a menstrual hygiene management ecosystem that includes end-to-end solutions for sanitary waste disposal. 

Disposal and recycling of sanitary pads is a major environmental problem globally. In India, the disposal of sanitary napkins is primarily disorganized and unhygienic. India disposes more than 1200 crores of plastic sanitary pads yearly; more than 98% are in landfills and water bodies. 

Padcare Labs has developed different solutions for managing sanitary pads – Padcare Bin for keeping used sanitary pads, Padcare X for recycling and extracting useful materials like plastic and paper from sanitary pads, and Padcare Vend, a sanitary napkin vending machine. 

Founded in 2018, the company’s list of clients includes Meta, Capgemini, TCS, and Goldman Sachs, among others. In January 2023, it came into the national spotlight when it appeared at Shark Tank India and bagged a deal of $120k.


Founders: Awais Ahmed and Kshitij Khandelwal

Bengaluru-based Pixxel is a space technology company specializing in offering insights for real-time management of climate and environmental issues.

Recognizing the limitations of existing satellite data for advanced applications, Pixxel focuses on hyperspectral imaging satellites to address this gap. Hyperspectral imaging involves collecting images at various wavelengths that are not detectable by single-bandwidth imaging sensors.

In the significant year of 2023 for Indian space exploration, where India achieved breakthrough milestones like landing on the Moon’s south pole and sending a spacecraft to study the Sun, Pixxel stands out as a space tech startup contributing to this advancement.

Pixxel’s expertise lies in hyperspectral satellite technology, capturing images across hundreds of wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum. The technology can provide up to 50 times more information than conventional satellites in orbit.

This capability is valuable for gaining insights into the planet’s health and addressing environmental issues like monitoring forest cover and deforestation, measuring climate risks such as flooding, famine, and wildfire, monitoring water resources and detecting hazardous material, and taking timely measures to curb the danger.

Founded in 2019, Pixxel became the first Indian company to launch a commercial satellite into space in 2022. In June 2023, the startup raised $36 million in a Series B round, taking the overall funding to $68.3 million. 


Founders: Supreeth Rao, Satish Ramchandani, Mithun Suvarna, and, Sangat Babu

Bengaluru-based Updapt is a SaaS company specializing in reporting related to environment, social, and governance (ESG). Updapt tech-enabled solution lets companies track, monitor, and report their ESG performance data.

ESG is becoming integral to companies’ business and risk management strategy as they seek to manage their environmental impacts, energy consumption and intensity, water consumption, waste generation, and greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 1 to 3).

Moreover, ESG reporting is also needed as part of mandatory reporting set by regulators and investors. In India, SEBI has mandated business responsibility and sustainability reporting (BRSR) for the top 1,000 companies listed by market capitalization in a phased manner. 

Founded in 2019, Updapt has a slew of clients using its products, including Apollo Hospitals, Cipla, CEAT, Dominos, Licious, and Sun Pharma, among others. 


Founders: Amar Nagaram

Bengaluru-based Virgio is a sustainable fashion brand that aims to reduce the environmental footprint of each garment. Virgio sells clothes made with naturally available materials like cotton and viscose and does not use toxic dyes or unsustainable fabrics like polyester.

Virgio ensures transparency in the supply chain, provides fair wages, and showcases each garment’s carbon emission, water, and energy consumption, empowering consumers to make conscientious and sustainable choices.

Clothing industry and fast fashion, in particular, have become a significant environmental concern as they promote overproduction and overconsumption. In addition, to cater to aspirational consumers, Fast fashion companies use harmful fabrics and chemicals and exploit labor to cut corners on pricing.

Founded in 2022, Virgio is the only company on our list that has pivoted from unsustainability to sustainability. The company started as a fast fashion brand and raised $37 million from investors. Then, upon quick realization, it made a switch to sustainable fashion. 


Founders: Abhishek Gupta and Shekhar Vashistha

Jaipur-based WeVOIS is a solid waste management company that enables door-to-door waste collection.

The company has introduced an integrated solution that includes a mobile app for sanitation workers, which helps them plan navigation, access training programs, and track their wages. The solution also offers real-time tracking for waste vehicle fleets, enabling municipal authorities to coordinate garbage disposal.

Inefficient waste management techniques are a cause of concern for many cities in India and globally. WeVOIS Labs solutions have led to a significant increase in waste collection efficiency, thus reducing environmental pollution. 

Starting in 2018, the company has made its presence across 18 cities in India, including Jaipur, Dehradun, Gwalior, and Jaisalmer.

Zero Cow Factory

Founders: Sohil Kapadia and Parini Kapadia

Surat-based Zero Cow Factory uses biotechnology to develop sustainable animal-free milk and dairy products. The company has developed a patented technology that offers a new alternative to cow’s milk protein that replicates its taste, texture, nutrient profile, and appearance without any animal being involved.

Zero Cow Factory focuses on animal-free casein production, the most complex protein, that can be used to make sustainable dairy products like cheese, yogurt, and ice cream.

The animal-based milk production leads to significant environmental impacts, including the generation of greenhouse gas emissions, land usage, and high water consumption. In addition to the environmental issues, the dairy industry is also responsible for causing animal cruelty, like injecting cows with drugs, taking away a calf from its mother cow, and confining animals in unhygienic sheds. 

Zero Cow Factory is set to provide a sustainable alternative to animal-based dairy production. The company uses bioengineering microbes and precision fermentation to develop animal-free milk protein and dairy products.

Founded in 2021, the company is the only green startup on our list working in biotechnology research to find sustainable alternatives. In April 2023, the company raised $4 million in a seed round, which it plans to expand its research further and aims to become the first company to get global regulatory approval.

Zypp Electric

Founders: Akash Gupta, Tushar Mehta, and Rashi Agarwal

Gurugram-based Zypp Electric provides EV-as-a-service to local merchants, e-commerce giants, and delivery executives. The company has fully automated IoT and AI-enabled electric two-wheelers for last-mile deliveries in NCR, Mumbai, and Bengaluru.

The EVs provided by Zypp Electrics not only help their clients keep their delivery costs low and reduce pollution, but its technology platform enables them to keep track of their fleet and make performance improvements.

Founded in 2017, the company has made some rapid strides this year with major partnerships and collaboration.

In April this year, Zypp Electric commenced its pilot with Taiwan’s Gogoro; in October 2023, the company also teamed up with Lectrix EV to add 100000 electric scooters, which it will need to serve its major e-commerce clients like Zomato, Swiggy, Amazon, Uber, and Big Basket. 

Wrapping Up

This is the first year since 2020 that businesses worldwide can reflect without the long shadow of the pandemic, masks, and restrictions. However, the year was also filled with economic uncertainty across companies, jobs, and startup funding. 

A study has revealed that the funding received by Indian startups in 2023 hit a five-year low, with many job losses indicating a prolonged funding winter. 

The good news is that this gloom has not really affected green startups in India, as the year saw many investors, venture capitalists, and private equity players pump money into sectors such as sustainable mobility, renewable energy, and climate technology.

This probably will be extended to next year as well, when Ola Electric will become the first Indian startup in the climate sector to go public, planning to raise $660 million. At the same time, the startups we have listed in our previous editions continue to make our planet livable, with BluSmart, Ather Energy, and Euler Motors deserving a special mention.

The success of the Indian climate startups and their growth and scale-up are essential to meeting the global climate challenges.

Selection Methodology

The thought process that went behind the selection of these 11 environmental startups

As you can imagine, selecting 11 Indian Green Startups working for the climate is extremely challenging. The scale at which Indian entrepreneurs have responded to the global climate crisis is extraordinary, and the sheer number of startups in the field makes it challenging to pick 11 of them. 

The main criteria was to make the list exhaustive and cover startups from various sectors.

Like last year, we did not want to overpopulate the list with startups from one sector. As we understand, sustainable mobility is one sector that has emerged as the key driver for our fight against climate change. That means the number of EV-related startups is also high. This is true not just in India but across the globe. In addition, the funding requirement for EV companies is also higher than a few other green companies, which makes them grab more news headlines. To counter this, we picked only 1 EV startup. 

We have analyzed these green startups, looking at all the significant publically available accomplishments, like business growth, funding, awards, and long-term business potential in addressing environmental challenges.

Past Editions

2022 Year in Review – 11 Indian Green Startups Working for the Climate

Indian Green Startups

2021 Year in Review – 11 Indian Green Startups Working for the Climate



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Change Started is a platform that covers stories, news, research, analysis, opinions, best practices from around the world on issues that are important for the environment and protecting our Planet.

Through inclusive climate action, which includes people like you and me, we can create a sustainable planet.

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