Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Colorado’s Cleantech Market Expansion for 2012 Part 2: Is the Bubble Bursting? Perspectives from Cleantech Investors

In the second of a three-part blog series on the Colorado cleantech marketplace outlook for 2012, recruiter and entrepreneur Dave Mayer offers an glimpse into the growing Colorado cleantech community.

To get a clearer vision on what to expect this year, we interviewed a number of well-respected leaders on what 2012 holds for Colorado’s cleantech industry.

Dave Gold, of Access Venture Partners believes the bursting of the proverbial Cleantech Bubble is a good thing. Dave believes that 2012 will be a “back to business kind of year”…with a solid amount of activity in Colorado, and “We agree that perhaps a dose of reality isn’t a bad thing,” Dave said in a recent blog post. Currently, renewable energy only constitutes 8 percent of US power consumption but that number is increasing at an average rate of 7 percent over the past several years…extrapolating from that, renewable energy consumption would likely double less than every 11 years. 

He continues, “Colorado will continue to be recognized as a hotspot for cleantech in 2012 and beyond.” Dave has been involved with a number of successful cleantech investments in Colorado, including Tendril Inc., which we cover in the next post.

According to Trent Yang, Director of the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI) at the University of Colorado, and Managing Director of Clean Range Ventures, there are several solid examples of Colorado’s recent success in cleantech. Trent notes that “In 2011, GE specifically selected Colorado for their largest solar manufacturing facility, Advanced Energy Economy recognized Colorado's leadership in the space by inviting the Colorado Cleantech Industry Association to become one of its founding partners, and the Governor's Energy Office continues to take a balanced and pro-business policy approach that will ensure sustainable growth into the future.”

Yang goes on to note that “University of Colorado's spin-out companies, Sundrop Fuels and OPX Biotechnologies, have received significant follow-on funding and are being recognized as having some of the most innovative solutions in the marketplace.” These are just a few specific examples of how Colorado continues to cement its status as a national leader in cleantech development and innovation.

In the next post, we’ll look at the Colorado cleantech marketplace from the perspective of the research labs and companies that are quickly growing our economy. 

Dave Mayer is a Colorado Cleantech Industry Association member and serial entrepreneur based in Denver. Currently, Mayer is CEO and founder of Technical Integrity, a cleantech recruiting firm. For more information, visit his website at http://technicalintegrity.com/

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