Investing on cleantech now that the hype is gone

Everyone is talking about cleantech and everyone believes that cleantech is a great business opportunity that you should not neglect. But is this not just a hype soon to be replaced with the next fad?

David M. Gold, a Managing Director with Access Venture Partners, says that cleantech has experienced its own mini dotcom era now followed by a dot bomb phase. He notes that the end of the beginning is expressed by the dramatic reduction of the available venture capital for cleantech companies, as some diversified funds pull out of making cleantech investments and cleantech-focused funds find it challenging to raise new capital. On this article (you can find it here), he points out that the real dynamics that will drive the explosion of clean technologies is the impending notewrothy growth in demand for commodities of all types, derived by the world population growth, and not the a focus on global warming and the anticipation of government policies on carbon.

More specifically he says that “Many cleantech venture capitalists have focused on CO2 as the driving force for innovation. But I have always looked at cleantech as way to drive increased efficiency, reduce waste and create less expensive alternatives — the things that drive bottom line benefits in the free market. In other words, creating Gold by being Green (hence the name of my blog). The combination of the natural gas boom and the political reality of the unlikelihood of a price on CO2 emissions in the U.S. (or just about any nation that doesn’t already have one) has caused those with a CO2-focused investment thesis to face a very challenging environment.”

He concludes by saying that “cleantech is about reducing the consumption of all sorts of non-renewable commodities, there will be many compelling investment opportunities yet to come”

To me it seems essential that one is able to take a longer-term and overall view of arising investment opportunities in order to avoid missteps similar to those made by investors in the past regarding fads like investments in the Web or in nanotechnology. 

Special thanks to

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