Tales and Tips from the Winner’s Circle #1 MABE Bio
As this year’s cohort prepares to pitch at the Regional Finals, we catch up with last year’s winners. Read on to see how they’ve progressed, what they’ve learned, and their golden tip for aspiring entrepreneurs.
Marina Belintani – MABE Bio, Brazil
MABE Bio combines nature and technology to create materials. They reinvent the leather production cycle with their plant-based leather made from the local Brazilian Angico tree. Their regenerative production model re-invents the way that leather is created and respects and re-empowers the cycle of nature.
What was special about your ClimateLaunchpad experience?
It was a period of so much learning – it challenged me to make a critical analysis of what I wanted as a person, and what I wanted my business to be. It was like therapy for your business – it helped me translate my mission and values into actionable steps.
The National and International components catapulted us on the world stage! We gave interviews, including to some important press outlets in Brazil. Afterwards we were contacted by funders not only from Brazil, but also the US. To top it all off, we are part of the Bloomberg New Catalyst 2023 program!
Your biggest highlight since ClimateLaunchpad?
My partner Rachel Maranhão and I raised the pre-seed round from Antler Brazil. Recently, I was selected to be a part of the Bloomberg New Economy Catalyst 2023. With the financial support from ClimateLaunchpad, Antler, and Brazilian governmental grants, we were able to finance the R&D of Angico leather and kick off our supply chain project. When we started it was only me – now it’s a business… It is alive!
What’s the hardest part of running a start-up?
Reaching your milestones while keeping your company financially secure. It’s been working, we started from zero, and now we have a team working on Angico bioleather R&D. It has been very challenging to develop a business model with an ecosystemic approach, in which we need to validate some hypotheses and, at the same time, take action at the right time.
How do you stay positive?
I remind myself that anything is possible when you do your best and believe in what you are doing. You will get so many no’s, but when you get that yes, it will be life-changing.
If you had a time machine, what would you tell your earlier self?
I would tell myself to calm down and stay resilient. It’s not an easy journey, so when you start being critical about yourself – it is important to slow down and believe in your idea and that it will work out. That’s how you keep going.
Our goal is to keep improving the performance of Angico leather, launch the material in partnership with a brand, develop the pilot-scale, and structure our supply chain. We also have plans to expand our business models by developing other materials and revenue streams. At MABE Bio, we aim to provide not only sustainable materials but also a regenerative production model that can be good for people and the planet.
We want to inspire other start-ups and together with researchers and the local community show the world that there is value from the forest.
And your golden tip(s) for this year’s cohort?
Truly believe in your project: This goes back to my time-machine advice – calm down and believe in the potential of your idea.
Understand the value of ClimateLaunchpad: Use not only the training, but also the connections the network gives.
Just keep going: Keep improving and you will make it happen.