Cleantech money, there's more, but there's also less

A report on venture capital investment shows cleantech is doing better now than it was a year ago. However, the sector is suffering due to the current economic woes of Wall Street and big financials that went skinny-dipping with the subprime sharks.

A report on venture capital investment shows cleantech is doing better now than it was a year ago. However, the sector is suffering due to the current economic woes of Wall Street and big financials that went skinny-dipping with the subprime sharks.

The upside is very upbeat: Q1 venture capital investments into cleantech were $625 million, up more than fifty percent from Q1, 2007. However, there's also a downside. Q1 was off 6% from the last quarter of '07. The Q1 numbers show how strong cleantech got with sharp growth during 2007. It may simply be that VCs will wait until the bodies are counted in major financial centers and then resume backing cleantech start-ups. Or the recession/depression anxiety may cause a little global freezing, of assets.

Clearly VCs are watching the anemic IPO market. Only five VC-backed companies went public in Q1 of this year compared to 18 a year ago,same quarter. Certainly a global chill is being felt.

Most popular with VCs right now: life sciences and biotech, followed by Internet, Cleantech comes in third.