Gregory Constantine is co-founder and CEO at Air Company, a Brooklyn-based engineering firm that developed carbon-conversion technology that removes carbon dioxide from the air and transforms it into impurity-free alcohols, which it then uses to manufacture consumer goods.
“We use CO2 that is captured prior to being emitted into the atmosphere, helping to curb the planet’s atmospheric CO2 levels.”
How did you first move to New York and what makes New York a great city to start a company?
(Gregory Constantine) I’m originally from Australia, where I attended the University of Sydney and started my career in the music industry, managing musicians and music festivals. I moved to New York in 2014 and was recruited to work at one of the world’s most prominent alcohol companies. Fast forward a few years, I met my now business partner, Dr. Stafford Sheehan, on an overseas Forbes 30 Under 30 trip. This is where we began early discussions around the initial concept for Air Company. New York has always been an international hub for innovation and forward-thinking. Here, we’re able to work with the most talented scientists and researchers while developing strategic relationships with key players in the tech, consumer goods and climate solutions spaces from around the world. It only made sense that we laid the foundation for our company here.
Please explain what Air Company’s mission is and how its CO2 conversion technology works.
(GC) Air Company’s mission is to utilise as much carbon dioxide as possible while preventing additional carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere, all in an effort to slow the momentum of climate change. The values we stand upon are rooted in utilising technology, creative innovation, and consumer goods to help solve that problem, while creating an equitable future for all.
(GC) We’re providing a viable solution for tackling climate change by repurposing carbon emissions and converting them into products of value. We use CO2 that is captured prior to being emitted into the atmosphere, helping to curb the planet’s atmospheric CO2 levels. We invented a Carbon Conversion Reactor that transforms CO2 into impurity-free, carbon-negative alcohols. The inputs are air (CO2), water, and sun (renewable energy) with oxygen and water as the only byproducts. Our technology mimics photosynthesis, but more efficiently. We then use these alcohols as the base of both consumer and commercial goods, from vodka to fragrance, all of which we use as R&D for industry applications.