Following my move to Singapore last month, I am fortunate to be working hand-in-hand with our Circulate Capital team on the ground as we complete due diligence for our first investments. 

Last week, I had the opportunity to spend time in China's Yunnan Province at the inaugural Fortune Global Sustainability Conference. I had the honor of sharing the stage with many amazing leaders, such as trusted advisor, Bill McDonough who continues to push us on design and circularity and how we need to be informed by what happens at the end of use stage of a package. He reminded us that the future demands for us to use less overall and design with bio-benign materials made with nature in mind.  We need supply chains and economics to deliver and re-capture those nutrients at scale. 

Among my many takeaways, one that stood out is the need to balance heart and mind. The issue we are working on has struck an emotional chord with many and it is important to harness that emotion with pragmatic investments needed for today. Every investment Circulate Capital makes must keep the aspirational vision for the future in mind while addressing the circularity of materials and value chain requirements of today. 

I look forward to continuing to work with each of you as we try to do just that -- solving for today while we get it right for the future.


Rob Kaplan
Founder & CEO
Circulate Capital
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‘Resource,’ Not ‘Waste.’ ‘Customer,’ Not ‘Consumer:’
The World’s Plastic Crisis Needs a New Vocabulary

September 5, 2019 - Between the introduction of plastic to the world in the 1950s and 2015, more than 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic has been produced. Of that, 79% resides in landfills. If the trend continues, by 2050 the planet will be shouldering 12 billion metric tons of plastic waste—35,000 times what the Empire State Building weighs.

A panel of investors, business innovators, and one filmmaker convened at Fortune’s Global Sustainability Forum in Yunnan, China on Thursday to swap insights about how to tackle this issue.

Read the full article on >
Preventing Plastic Waste Is a Global Crisis—and an Investment Opportunity

September 5, 2019 - Ever since China stopped importing nearly all forms of plastic waste last year, governments and companies have struggled to find alternative ways to dispose of their garbage.

But now, investors and producers are beginning to see the plastic waste crisis as an opportunity instead of a problem, said Rob Kaplan, founder and CEO of Circulate Capital, speaking at Fortune’s Global Sustainability Forum in Yunnan, China on Thursday.

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What Marium's Death Can Teach Us About Embracing The Circular Economy

Rob Kaplan, August 30, 2019 - As someone who devotes much of my waking hours to helping solve the ocean plastic crisis through private market investment solutions, I am constantly struck by the power of real-life stories to bring this issue to the forefront of the popular consciousness. And there is no question that the stories that have the power to galvanize us more than any others are those that concern the destructive effects of ocean pollution on marine life. Maybe it’s because we all connect in such a visceral way to animals. But the fact is that these stories have a way of putting in starkest terms the effects of ocean pollution on wildlife. The recent horror story of Marium, the baby dugong that died off the shores of Thailand after ingesting some unidentified form of ocean plastic is a case in point. Within days of her death, the news had been widely reported on all over the globe.

But how do we ensure that Marium’s death wasn’t in vain? What can it teach us about how we can protect not just our wildlife but the health of the world’s ocean, our climate and our health and welfare, too?

Read the full article on >
To learn more about Circulate Capital and The Incubator Network, or to apply for funding, please visit our website to download the full Request for Proposals for projects seeking capital.
CSR Asia Summit 2019
September 18 - 19, Bangkok, Thailand
Our Ocean 2019
October 23 - 24, Oslo, Norway
October 22 - 25, San Francisco, USA
UN SEA of Solutions Week
November 11 - 15, Bangkok, Thailand
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