Sainsbury’s partners with Williams Advanced Engineering and greenlights sustainable start-ups with £5m investment

As part of its commitment to achieve Net Zero in its own operations by 2035, Sainsbury’s has announced the launch of Sainsbury’s Innovation Investments which will invest a minimum of £5 million over the next four years in start-up companies marketing innovative and sustainable technologies that seek to reduce operational carbon emissions and water consumption.

Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) will seek out and invest in start-up companies, beyond Sainsbury’s supply chain, in various sectors. The first investment is expected to be announced before the end of 2022. As well as providing much-needed investment, Sainsbury’s seeks to accelerate dynamic start-ups and small/medium enterprises (SMEs) by developing, testing and deploying transformational technology that can reduce carbon emissions and water consumption.

This announcement reinforces the significant progress Sainsbury’s has already made in reducing its impact on the environment, having significantly reduced carbon emissions in its own operations by 762,119 tCO2e, a 7% reduction year over year. other and 20% from 2018./19 baseline, keeping the retailer on track to meet its 2035 Net Zero goal.

Sainsbury’s Innovation Investments is part of Sainsbury’s ongoing partnership with WAE, a global technology and engineering services company, which combines cutting-edge technological advances with the best engineers in the industry; accelerate driving towards zero emissions.

In 2017, Sainsbury’s began the process of fitting innovative Aerofoil technology to its in-store fridges. Since then, the pioneering energy-saving technology, developed in collaboration by UK start-up Aerofoil Energy and WAE, has been rolled out across the estate, resulting in an estimated 15% energy reduction, and d ‘other retailers have followed suit.

Sainsbury’s Director of Property and Procurement Patrick Dunne said:

“We are committed to our 2035 Net Zero goal and are proud to play our part in leading the way in creating solutions that will reduce carbon emissions and water consumption not just in our stores, but across the whole sector. We know that reducing emissions and water consumption is an essential part of tackling the climate crisis and to achieve this we understand the importance of investing in pioneering technologies that can be adopted by all retailers. .

“Tackling a problem of this magnitude requires collaboration and we are truly excited to not only invest in these companies, but to provide a pathway to in-store use, working towards a more sustainable future for all. ”

Matthew Burke, Head of Technology Enterprises, Williams Advanced Engineering, said:

“Adopting new and unproven technologies is a necessary condition for achieving Net Zero and many of these products and services will emerge from the tech start-up community. Investments in Sainsbury’s innovation will accelerate the commercialization of these technologies through the opportunity to invest, test and deploy across Sainsbury’s vast estate and operations. In doing so, it will serve as a springboard for wider and rapid adoption of the technology by customers in retail and other industries who all share the common challenges of Net Zero. With WAE’s focus on sustainability and its expertise in technology and engineering combined with early stage technology investments, we are delighted to support Sainsbury’s journey to Net Zero with the launch of this unique investment initiative. .

Sainsbury’s has pledged to become Net Zero in its own operations by 2035, five years earlier than its original ambition. The retailer is calling on sustainable tech companies willing to join its journey to Net Zero 2035 to apply at

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