Recent Posts:

Cleantech events: Four stops in one column

Rob Day: June 29, 2006, 11:17 AM
Attended several good cleantech investing events over the past few days: The AAMA's very well done clean energy panel in Palo Alto, a strong cleantech investing panel at Larta, and a fun roundtable discussion which should be out in the September VCJ. Also participated in a few category judging calls for the California Clean Tech Open. The cleantech space is getting a whole lot of attention these days.

The AAMA panel session was moderated by John Denniston of KPCB, and also included Bryant Tong of Nth Power, Vikas Desai of SunPower, Dave Pearce of MiaSole (as always when I mention MiaSole, I'm compelled to note that I've got a minor vested interest in seeing them succeed), and David...

Coaltek, Prometheus, Sionyx, Cilion, and week-end catchups

Rob Day: June 25, 2006, 4:29 PM
Two or three recent cleantech fundings scooped by Dan at PE Week Wire on Friday:
  • Coaltek, which raised a $7.7mm Series A just this past November, has apparently raised a subsequent $5mm Series B-1 inside round. All existing investors appear to have participated, according to PEWW.

Solar: Get ready for some big moves

Rob Day: June 21, 2006, 8:52 AM
There's a lot of shifting going on right now behind the scenes in solar, and cleantech investors should be ready for some major moves over the next 12-18 months in this market. The following is just one man's half-educated guesses, so take it for what it's worth:
  • Thin-films startups are gearing up to make major launches in production. From today's very public news about Nanosolar's massive round and plans for the "world's largest solar cell factory," to less public news about other thin-films startups that are finalizing their production lines, the end of this year and beginning of next year should see some actual market-ready product launches out of CIGS and other...

Nanosolar and Vaperma

Rob Day: June 21, 2006, 8:01 AM
  • Bay Area thin-films startup Nanosolar announced a $75mm raise yesterday, bringing the total amount raised by the company up to $100mm. Existing investors Mohr Davidow, Benchmark, OnPoint and Mitsui participated, as did new investors SAC Capital and GLG Partners (both are hedge funds), Swiss Re, Grazia Equity, Capricorn Management, Beck, and a couple of angel investors' investment groups. Matt Marshall has a very nice profile on the company (there's also a nice writup in VentureWire today, for those with access), which mentions Konarka as a thin-film competitor but doesn't mention other CIGS startups in the bay area that are also building production facilities -- CIGS is starting to...

SunEdison, QuNano announce raises

Rob Day: June 15, 2006, 11:10 PM
  • QuNano, a Swedish company developing "silicon heterostructure nanowires," announced a $6.1mm Series A, with participation by Provider Venture Partners, Teknoinvest, BTG plc, and LU Innovation and LUAB -- all are European investors. QuNano's technology has applications in a number of silicon-using cleantech applications, including LEDs and solar.

A few updates; European and Israeli cleantech VC at $120mm in Q1

Rob Day: June 15, 2006, 10:32 PM
On ethanol: Here's an interesting conversation with Mark Townsend Cox of the New Energy Fund on the topic (thanks to Nick Allen for the heads up)... Also, here's a Red Herring article on ethanol. The title is much more provocative than the article itself.

On solid state lighting: A good description of some of the potential applications of blue LED lighting in this article.

On clean water: Nanotube breakthroughs for desalination from LLNL.

On cleantech investing in Europe and Israel: At $120mm in Q1, it's a quarter the size of US cleantech venture capital, but still, impressive numbers.