CHICAGO – July 16, 2021 – Clean Energy Trust announced today Rebundle as the 2021 recipient of the U.S. Bank Foundation Cleantech Inclusion Award. Rebundle is led by entrepreneur Ciara Imani May. This award supports female and minority entrepreneurs who are building innovative companies that benefit the environment, create jobs, and drive economic development.
Rebundle is a black woman-owned startup that manufactures a plant-based alternative to synthetic braiding hair. Their product, made of banana fiber, reduces plastic waste and is an alternative to plastic synthetic hair, which can cause scalp irritation and contains harmful chemicals. Rebundle also offers its customers a recycling program that collects used plastic hair since it is estimated that roughly 30 million pounds of plastic synthetic hair go into U.S. landfills each year. To date, they have received roughly 216 pounds of hair waste that can be repurposed into materials like outdoor furniture.
“We applaud the wonderful work Rebundle and Ciara are doing for our communities not only to serve a need but also their mission of supporting environmental sustainability through their products,” said Reba Dominski, executive vice president, Chief Social Responsibility Officer for U.S. Bank. “Rebundle’s mission aligns well with our environmental sustainability work focused on investing in renewable energy and offering innovative products and services to meet the needs of tomorrow’s green economy. Congrats to Ciara and Rebundle, we can’t wait to see what you do next.”
“Thanks to the U.S. Bank Foundation’s ongoing support, this award continues to help us to empower underrepresented entrepreneurs working on climate and environmental innovation,” said Erik Birkerts, Chief Executive Officer of Clean Energy Trust. “We look forward to mentoring Rebundle while helping them to strengthen their environmentally sustainable objectives.”
As the 2021 award recipient, Rebundle will receive a $25,000 grant, 12-months of business mentorship and programming from U.S. Bank and Clean Energy Trust, and heightened exposure to both investors and potential customers.
“Rebundle is proud to be the 2021 U.S. Bank Foundation Cleantech Inclusion Award recipient,” said Ciara Imani May, Founder, and CEO of Rebundle. “With our pre-orders selling out twice, and excitement around our product growing, Rebundle is eager to work with Clean Energy Trust and U.S. Bank to continue our steady, sustainable growth while remaining focused on our mission.”
Learn more about U.S. Bank’s social responsibility work at usbank.com/community.
About U.S. Bank
U.S. Bancorp, with more than 70,000 employees and $543 billion in assets as of March 31, 2020, is the parent company of U.S. Bank National Association, the fifth-largest commercial bank in the United States. The Minneapolis-based bank blends its relationship teams, branches and ATM network with mobile and online tools that allow customers to bank how, when and where they prefer. U.S. Bank is committed to serving its millions of retail, business, wealth management, payment, commercial and corporate, and investment services customers across the country and around the world as a trusted financial partner, a commitment recognized by the Ethisphere Institute naming the bank one of the 2020 World’s Most Ethical Companies. Visit U.S. Bank at www.usbank.com or follow on social media to stay up to date with company news.
About Clean Energy Trust
Clean Energy Trust provides catalytic capital and support to early-stage startups in the Greater Midwest region of the United States working on solutions for clean energy, decarbonization, and environmental sustainability. Based in Chicago, Clean Energy Trust invests in and provides hands-on support to help such startups scale and succeed. To date, Clean Energy Trust has helped its 36 portfolio companies raise $31 of additional investment for every $1 Clean Energy Trust has invested. Clean Energy Trust is proud that 60% of its portfolio companies have female or minority founders. Learn more at www.CleanEnergyTrust.org.
Susan Beatty, U.S. Bank
612.303.9229, [email protected]
Amy Yanow Fairbanks, Clean Energy Trust
847.208.2190, [email protected]