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Cleantech Venture Investments reach $1.9 billion in 1Q10

Cleantech venture investments totaled $1.9 billion in 1Q10, with funding spread among 180 companies in North America, Europe, China and India, according to the Cleantech Group and Deloitte, who compiled the figures. The number of deals in 1Q10 outstrips the previous record set in 4Q09 (165 deals), suggesting the sector is continuing to bounce back from a period of stagnation in early 2009.

Growth in cleantech venture investment was matched by new investment from utilities and corporations. In the U.S., Wind and Solar PV remained the most attractive energy sources for utilities due to extended tax credits, while utilities also focused on smart grid projects boosted by significant federal grants. In the corporate space, direct investments announced during 1Q10 increased by 140% quarter-over-quarter compared to 4Q09, primarily by energy and consumer and industrial products companies. Solar PV, Wind and Smart Grid continue to be attractive sectors for top utilities and corporations looking to invest in clean technologies.

The leading sector in the quarter by amount invested was transportation--predominantly infrastructure and vehicles--which had a record quarter ($704 million), helped significantly by a $350 million round for Better Place, the second largest cleantech VC deal ever. Solar was in second place ($322 million). Energy Efficiency was the most popular sector measured by number of deals, with 39 funding rounds, ahead of Solar and Transportation (which had 27 deals each). The largest transactions in these sectors were:

North America accounted for 81% of the total, a three-year high for the region, while Europe and Israel accounted for 14%, China for 4%, and India 1%.


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