Viewing posts tagged: "Vc"

The Cream of Europe’s Green Startups to Meet in Geneva Next Week

Michael Kanellos: June 12, 2009, 3:16 PM

When it comes to high tech, Europe is often overlooked.

The U.S. mints most of the world's high-tech startups and pulls in the most venture capital. Asia, meanwhile, dominates consumer electronics and manufacturing and has become a huge market in its own right. Europe has a few giants – SAP and Nokia, for instance – but you don't see the same frentic level of activity. Restrictive university policies regarding tech transfer, a greater emphasis on lifetime employment, and regional competition have hindered the industry. Israel, which geographically is not in Europe, is the recipient of more VC funds than any country that is in Europe. As one Brit told me, Cambridge is one of the best...

Forget a Moore’s Law in Energy, Says VC

Michael Kanellos: June 4, 2009, 12:41 AM

Every week someone at a conference will suggest, "What we need is a Moore's Law for energy." It comes right after someone else asks, "Where is the Google of greentech?"

I thus want to give a big thumbs up to Vivek Mehra, a partner at August Capital and co-founder of Cobalt Networks, for publicly and eloquently stating what some of us have less effectively mumbled for a while.

"There is no such thing as a Moore's Law in energy," he said to an audience at the Smart Grid Innovation Symposium sponsored by the Innovation Center of Denmark (which took place in Menlo Park, Calif.) "The time scales are just different," he added.

Technology will improve, he noted, but not with the same...

Smart Grid Finance Rundown: VCs and Congress Rock the Grid

Eric Wesoff: May 5, 2009, 8:30 AM

In 2004, the term “Smart Grid” didn’t really exist – despite the Demand Response successes of now-public firms like Comverge and EnerNoc. 

Fast forward five years and we’ve seen hundreds of millions of dollars of VC investment flow into a wide range of smart grid startups, essentially creating a new market and ecosystem from power generators to home networks. This year has gotten off to a slow investment start but that will change in the coming quarters.

Smart grid technology, investment, and infrastructure must emerge if the states are to meet their ambitious Renewable Portfolio Standards.

But beware. As Stephen Lee, the Senior Technology Executive for Power Delivery and Utilization...

VC Doesn’t Scale

Eric Wesoff: May 5, 2009, 8:00 AM

VC Investment in Greentech 2005–2009

There are a lot of voices of late sounding the death knell for venture capital. The New York Times dusts this meme off every few years. One just has to have a good memory and ignore the nattering nabobs of negativity. They’re usually wrong.

Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures has a different take. Wilson has crunched some numbers and claims that “VC doesn’t scale.”  He has determined that: “You cannot invest $25 billion per year and generate the kinds of returns investors seek from the asset class,” and that, “The number that the asset class can take on each year is around $15 billion to $17 billion. It's interesting to note that the industry...

Indian Firm Invests in Green Power Projects

ghayes: April 6, 2009, 10:51 AM
The Indian company Green Infra has set a goal of having 500 megawatts of renewable energy in its portfolio by 2012. Wind energy will stand for 300 megawatts of the clean power investment while small-sized solar power projects will generate 100 megawatts. The rest will come from biomass and small gas-based projects. Green Infra is promoted by IDFC Private Equity Fund. The new green power project will need an investment of Rs 3,000 crore, according to Projects Today, the Indian projects database Website. But the investment will also be supported by various Indian Government incentives. As a commercial player in this field, Green Infra can benefit from concessional import duty on...

Slimed, Pt. 1: Biofuels and the Aquatic Species Program

Eric Wesoff: April 2, 2009, 9:02 PM

Scores of firms, startups and Fortune 500 companies alike, are working on algae-based biofuels.  Hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested.  And so far, maybe a few thousand gallons of algae oil have been produced. The question is: Can algae be economically cultivated and commercially scaled to make a material contribution to mankind’s liquid fuel needs?  The jury is still out. Ghosts of NREL Algae Programs Past The basement of the marine biology department at the University of Hawaii has a hallway lit by a dim incandescent bulb.  At the end of the hallway is a cardboard sign with the faded letters “ASP�? written on it.  A creaky door leads to a dank-smelling room crowded...

VC Bargains Ahead

ghayes: March 26, 2009, 4:26 PM
What drives green innovation in a time of financial crisis? Ira Ehrenpreis thinks now is a better time than ever for companies wanting to invest. The Wright brothers managed to fund their project and by doing so defined a century of flying. The military was their first buyer. Now, we're in the beginning of the century of cleantech, and the industry is turning to the government stimulus package to get things rolling. There are similarities between airplane construction in 1909 and cleantech development in 2009. At least according to Ira Ehrenpreis, General Partner of Technology Partners. Today he spoke to the visitors of Think Green, the ThinkEquity conference on cleantech and...