TreeCard, the provider of a wooden Mastercard debit card that channels profits from merchant surcharges into reforestation programmes, has raised $23 million in a funding round involving Peter Thiel's Valar Ventures, World Fund and EQT, Seedcamp, Episode 1 and various angels.
Eco-friendly search engine Ecosia bought a 20% stake in TreeCard in 2020 for £1 million. The startup raised a further $5.1 million in February last year ahead of its launch in the UK.
The wooden debit card comes with an app that lets users track spending, split bills with friends and monitor how many trees have been planted as a result of user spending. Operating over the Mastercard network, and using back-end card processing services from Synapse, TreeCard acts as a fully fledged debit account, able to receive top-up from a user's regular bank account, with support for chip and PIN, contactless transactions and mobile payments.
TreeCard makes money from the interchange and promises to invest 80% of profits into sustainable causes, including reforestation in partnership with Ecosia. The company claims to have planted 200,000 trees since its launch.
The new funding comes as the company gears up to enter ths US market, where it has a waitlist of 250,000 people.
Jamie Cox, CEO and co-founder comments: “We’ve always believed that if there was a button that could make your life more sustainable, then people would press it. There is a desire, and an urgent need, to be more sustainable but too often people don’t know where to start or aren’t sure about the right way to go about it.”