Do you want to make positive steps towards creating a greener future for your hospitality business? Look no further – meet Greener.

Founded in 2019, the cleantech company of 3 has created a matchmaking platform that helps you curate a genuinely sustainable food & drink business.

Here to answer our 10 questions today is CEO & Co-founder Dan Yates (pictured right).

1 – In your own words – what do you do?

Greener is a matchmaking platform that helps small businesses in the food and drink industry discover and implement sustainable solutions.

You can think of it a bit like a dating website, only instead of finding romantic partners we help our users build sustainable supply chains.

2 – What’s the most exciting thing about what you’re doing?

It’s genuinely novel! When people talk about cleantech and sustainability pretty much everyone thinks about carbon calculators and offsetting tools. These are undoubtedly important, but they don’t actually solve sustainability issues; they simply allow users to calculate and counterbalance the impact of production.

What we’re doing is changing the way that businesses function. We all know that we face monumental sustainability challenges, and we believe that the only way we are truly going to solve them is by making it easy for businesses to find, learn about, and work with the right partners.

3 – What are you most proud of so far?

I’m really proud of the progress we’ve made from a business perspective. In the past 12 months we’ve gone from having an idea, to raising over £142k, to building  and going live with a product, to breaking the 100 user milestone (with signups from all over the world).

But the thing that means the most to me is the feedback we’ve been getting from our early users. We’ve been blown away by the enthusiasm and support. Whenever you start a business, no matter how much research you have behind you, it’s a bit like taking a leap into the dark but it feels like we have really hit the nail on the head for a lot of small businesses. Hearing that has given us the confidence and drive to keep improving and growing so that we can reach as many businesses as possible.

4 – What have you found most difficult about being a startup?

It probably goes without saying, but startups are hard! There is so much to do, and every day I’m having to learn totally new skills and tools. The most difficult thing for me has been balancing a potentially infinite to-do list and constantly prioritising what needs my full attention.

Another hurdle that we’ve encountered is learning how to communicate about our technology in a less complicated way. Our team is made up of PhDs and techies, so we often fall into the trap of being quite jargony. I’ve spoken to a lot of startup teams who have the same issue, and the key here is to focus on what your product does for the user instead of what is happening behind the scenes.

Technology is great, but what it actually does for people is far more important.

5 – What would you do differently if you started now?

I’m really pleased with how everything has gone so far, so I guess the only thing I would change would be a slight mindset shift.

I focus a lot on making progress, to the extent that I don’t really allow myself to enjoy anything less than total success. I’m trying to be more balanced and to really savour the journey. Ultimately being able to work on your own startup with an incredible team of people is an opportunity that lots of people don’t get to experience.

Bottom line, I would tell myself to relax and celebrate the little wins – I might have gotten more sleep that way!

Helping you find the right partners for your food & drink business

" We all know that we face monumental sustainability challenges, and we believe that the only way we are truly going to solve them is by making it easy for businesses to find, learn about, and work with the right partners. "

— Dan Yates, CEO & Co-founder of Greener

6 – Where do you think you’ll be in 12 months?

Hopefully not locked down in my flat, glued to zoom all day. The Greener team has been totally remote since we started working full time in October 2020. In fact I only met one of the team in person for the first time over the summer, 8 months after they came on board…

Startups can be stressful and you often feel quite isolated as a founder, so myself and the whole team would love to transition to a hybrid office/work from home situation in the near future.

Business-wise, we’re hoping to have added a lot of functionality by then and we’re about to launch into  a new growth-focused phase.

7 – What tools/people/services/organisations from the cluster have helped you most?

Our development team Storm has been our partner on this project, and they are absolute champions! They have worked closely with us, and spent a lot of time understanding our idea and vision for the future.

I can’t speak highly enough of David and the whole team.

8 – What’s the best thing about the Bristol & Bath tech cluster?

The best thing from my perspective is the combination of a close-knit community and high-quality expertise and technical capabilities. You get to know people working across the breadth of the tech sector, and most are always keen to offer a helping hand or act as a sounding board.

9 – Who will you be nominating for a SPARKie next year?

Tricky one! I’m always keen to support other startups and early stage founders, I’ll be keeping an eye out for emerging startups to nominate.

10 – Where can we find out more about you?

There is a heap more info available on our website and social channels. You can find us at or on LinkedIn.