CleanTech Investment – Key Markets Summary

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A survey conducted by Hindmarsh Finance discovered what sectors in terms of Cleantech / Renewable Energy are in demand, and here are some interesting findings based on each region.

Investors in different regions tend to have different demands and interests

European investment firms sometimes include cleantech / renewable energy as part of a broader mandate which often include life sciences and biotechnology, which is quite different from those in North America

North American venture capital firms on the other hand, have emerged from technology venture capital firms and are now retraining their investment managers looking into cleantech opportunities

But in general, there is a growing trend in establishing cleantech / environmental dedicated fund or setting up a specialist team to invest in these deals.

North American markets

US is now the 3rd largest investor in cleantech, behind China and Germany, but its interests are quite broad. It has also invested in different green related industries which are sometimes not included in the recent survey.

Investments are now led by both former technology or biotechnology venture capital firms.
Very strong investments from energy companies, this will make many US energy companies become the world’s largest renewable energy companies over next 10 years.

Canada is becoming a very interesting market for listings, it has over 100 cleantech companies now listed on TSX and TSX-V Canadian stock exchange may become the most active stock exchange for small-medium sized cleantech companies over next 5 years; and once they grow, they will move to Nasdaq or NYSE
Increasing number of Asian & European companies now listing on North American stock exchanges, especially solar, water treatments and renewable energy projects.

Asia Pacific region

Australian government is becoming proactive in cleantech and renewable energy and have established multiple grants themselves

Chinese companies are very active in investing in cleantech and renewable energy projects – especially solar energy, as well as water treatment technologies and air pollution management applications

Japanese investment firms are very active and highly experienced in investing in cleantech opportunities – as well as those engaged in the process

Singaporean firms are especially active in investing in water treatment and management opportunities, they also provide export assistance for many companies expanding into China

Taiwanese investment firms are interested in investing in water treatment and solar energy as well as energy efficiency applications such as energy storage devices.

European CleanTech investments:

UK has recently established a large number of investment firms specialized in investing in renewable energy and cleantech opportunities, because of its landscape, wind power applications are particularly of interest from UK investors and utilities companies. 

Germany – very strong R&D capability and has a lot of interests investing in solar energy applications as well as advanced engineering systems and energy efficiency, waste management applications. 
It is now the world’s 2nd largest cleantech investor in terms of dollars.

Switzerland – Very interesting market and we have seen a large number of renewable energy funds or cleantech funds based in Switzerland, as well as Water Funds, including buying up significant portions of water rights and water assets in North America and Australia

Sweden and Norway also have many cleantech investment firms, their governments are also supportive in international opportunities.