Boom — the numbers for cleantech VC investing in 2012 are out and they ain’t pretty. A cleantech cliff of sorts has arrived and represents an end of an era. If you still want to be in the space in 2013, here’s 5 things you should avoid.
Not a bigger shocker from the Cleantech Group this morning: the amount of venture capital funding that went into cleantech startups worldwide in the second quarter of 2012 dropped by 25 percent, in terms of total dollars spent, from the prior year second quarter.
A new startup called Gridium, which launched a couple months ago and is co-led by energy entrepreneur Tom Arnold, has developed software that can help industrial and commercial building owners tap into smart meter data to help lower their energy bills.
Total investments in cleantech startups dropped in the first quarter of 2012 by 31 percent compared to the first quarter of 2011, and 19 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2011, according to the latest figures from the Cleantech Group.
China has long been perceived as the must-tackle market for clean power and cleantech, but it’s also become a spigot of private capital for startups that find the marriage of money and market opportunity particularly appealing.
Greentech VC hit $2.5 billion in the first quarter of 2011, the second-highest quarter on record. Is that a sign of renewed investor confidence, or a sign that greentech IPOs are weak?
Green technology needs to grow up and get a job — and it’s a tough job market. The third quarter saw a big drop-off in early-stage venture capital and an even steeper decline in solar power investments.
After spending the better part of the last two years scrambling to survive the recession, the discussion has shifted for cleantech firms and companies are now trying to figure out the best way to manage the recovery. Investors expect the greentech industry to come out ahead and lead the economic rebound this year, according to a survey released last week by accounting firm KPMG. The survey found that 77 percent of respondents believe venture investments in green technology will increase this year after declining last year, while only 67 percent expect overall venture capital investment to grow.
Experts are anticipating a crop of cleantech IPOs this year, as well, while some, such as venture capitalist Vinod Khosla, are concerned that some greentech IPOs this year may disappoint investors and sour the market for other green IPOs. Stimulus programs, such as the new round of ARPA-E funding announced last week, also are shifting the financing landscape, leading to new tactics as companies try to leverage government funding to advance over competitors.
Read More about From Recession to Recovery: Cleantech Companies Navigating Shifting Economy
When private investment in cleantech fell last year, government stimulus programs more than made up the difference, according to estimates that the Cleantech Group released at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco this week. And no government is doing more to fill the gap than China’s. China has set aside a whopping $200.8 billion in stimulus funding for cleantech, 79 percent more than the $112.2 billion the U.S. stimulus funds have allocated to the industry, according to the latest Stern report released last year. (Estimates of U.S. green stimulus funding have varied broadly, with many ranging between $50 billion and $80 billion as of last year with $36.7 billion allocated to the Department of Energy.)
A chart that Sheeraz Haji, president of the Cleantech Group, presented Thursday shows that while worldwide private investment in cleantech fell below $150 billion in 2009, from just above $150 billion the previous year, global stimulus spending added an estimated $76 billion to the total pool of cleantech funding in 2009 and is expected to reach $182 billion this year (see chart, above). The chart is based on analysis from the Cleantech Group, as well as numbers from the World Economic Forum, the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook, Bloomberg’s New Energy Finance and HSBC.
Read More about The Largest Cleantech VC: China
Lately, I’ve been hearing too many people talk about what people must do. If you start a blog, you must post three or four times every week. Your company must engage in conversations on