Company: RockPort Capital
Source: The Electrical Distributor Magazine
The renewable energy market looks hot, hot, hot—at least to those who believe the hype. When it comes to just about anything—green building technologies and renewable energy included—market forecasting is a tricky business, always subject to assumptions, caveats, and political exigencies. And where are the numbers coming from anyway? Is it an unbiased prediction or an industry group advocating policy measures? Certainly, excitement about renewables is clearly justified. Just be sure to look at and compare data with a critical eye—and an historical perspective.
The MoneyTree Report, produced by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), revealed that the second quarter of 2008 brought record levels of venture capital investment to the clean-tech sector: $883.5 million, a slight increase from first-quarter numbers and a striking 62% increase over 2007’s record-breaking second-quarter activity.
Focusing on energy technologies, a report entitled Clean Energy Trends 2008 from Clean Edge—a San Francisco-based research and publishing firm that helps companies, investors, and governments understand and profit from clean technologies—stated that U.S.-based venture capital investments in energy technologies more than quadrupled from $599 million in 2000 to $2.7 billion in 2007. Between 2006 and 2007, venture investments in the U.S. clean-energy sector increased by more than 70%.
David Prend, managing general partner at the venture capital firm Rockport Capital Partners in Boston, spoke enthusiastically on behalf of the NVCA: “What venture capital did for the Internet and biotech revolutions, we are now poised to replicate with clean-energy technologies with one difference: In the case of clean tech, the potential markets are bigger and much more mission critical for the entire globe.”