Green tech VC funding stabilizes over US$1 billion

Venture capital investment in green technology has once more exceeded US$1billion, and is stabilizing, according to analysts.
Written by David Worthington, Contributor

Venture capital investment in green technology has once again surpassed the US$1 billion mark, according to a new study published today.

The quarterly PwC/NVCA MoneyTree™ Report based on data from Thomson Reuters showed a 26 percent increase in green technology investment over the fourth quarter of 2010; the number of deals completed rose by 11 percent.

Investment in green technologies has exceeded $1 billion on four occasions in the study’s published history. MoneyTree has been tracking green technology since 1995. This quarter saw 69 VC deals totaling $1,038,109,700.

The closing of several large deals drove the increase; the top five accounted for the bulk of transactions. Some of the largest recipients included BrightSource Energy ($201.7M), Fisker Automotive ($111.9M), SoloPower (78.6M), Coda Automotive (76.4M), Fulcrum BioEnergy ($75M), and Harvest Power ($51.7M).

BrightSource recently received Bureau of Land Management permits to construct solar farms in California. Harvest Power’s process for transforming bio waste into energy drew the attention of Al Gore’s Generation Investment Management.

Mark Heesen, president of the NVCA, noted that clean technology investment was not a standout comparative to other sectors such as Internet or life science start-ups.

“What we are seeing is a commitment to funding companies through the various stages of their lifecycles, even in the later stages when capital needs intensify substantially. What this deliberate and prudent pace of investment lacks in hype, it makes up for in sustainability, and we are very encouraged for the coming year,” Heesen said in a prepared statement.

Earlier this month, market research firm Cleantech Group published a report, which found that venture capital money is flowing into green technology at the highest level since the company began to monitor global investment in 2002.

PricewaterhouseCoopers/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree™ Report, Data: Thomson Reuters.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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