French glass and construction giant Saint-Gobain made an $80 million strategic investment in Sage Electrochromics, a decade-old company based in Faribault, MN that makes “electrochromic windows” that tint and block light when a charge is applied. Sage’s windows are made using an all-ceramic stack of thin-film coatings over a glass substrate. Low DC voltages can switch the windows from letting in more than 60 percent of visible light, down to less than 5 percent. The DOE claims that electrochromic windows can cut air conditioning costs by up to 20 percent per year in commercial buildings. A competitor to Sage is 3-year-old Soladigm, which also makes electrochromic windows and is building its first commercial factory plant in Mississippi.
Energy efficiency startup SenseLogix raised a $1.6 million round A from VC firm Beringea and regional equity company North Star Equity Investment Partners. The Welsh firm builds sensors, controllers and software that can be retrofitted to optimize energy use in buildings.
Israel-based TaKaDu, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup that provides utilities with water infrastructure monitoring, won an undisclosed amount of venture funding led by Emerald Technology Ventures with existing investors Giza Venture Capital and Gemini Israel Funds. The firm's previous round was $3.5 million. TaKaDu provides water infrastructure monitoring as a service and acts as the "online eyes and ears" of the network. The firm's software-as-a-service model allows water utilities to reduce water loss and improve operational efficiency with no network changes or capital expenditures.
UK-based Intelligent Energy received $6 million in funding from SSE joint venture Scottish Enterprise for their fuel cell and hydrogen generation technology.
OnGreen combines social media and greentech to create a deal and jobs marketplace for greentech. The firm raised a $1.4 million round A from China Southern Hong Kong Investment.
Other Greentech Financings
Wells Fargo is set to invest $100 million in solar projects: GCL-Poly Energy Holdings and Wells Fargo announced a joint program through which Wells Fargo will invest over $100 million by the end of 2011 to develop solar PV power projects throughout the U.S. GCL Solar Energy, based in San Francisco, California, builds, owns, and operates solar photovoltaic power plants. GCL-Poly Energy Holdings is China’s largest polysilicon producer.
Borrego Solar Systems, a designer and installer of grid-tied commercial and public-sector solar power systems, closed its second fund with U.S. Bank and East West Bank to finance new solar energy projects worth approximately $36 million.
Green Bank, a Texas-based environment-focused banking group, completed its acquisition of the Dallas branch of bankrupt La Jolla Bank from OneWest.
Panasonic invested $30 million in Tesla and partnered to develop electric vehicle battery cells.
Renewable energy developer Harvest Power of Waltham, MA added $7.5M in debt financing for organic waste management.
Good Energies invested $50 million in U.S. wind developer Champlin, which is focused on 100-megawatt to 500-megawatt wind projects in the western U.S.
Evolution One, South Africa’s first greentech private equity fund, with $94 million under management, invested $7.55 million in Enviroserv Waste Management, a South African green waste management firm, the largest waste management company in South Africa.