Friday, January 06, 2006

SDE, Azuro, Zensys, Velocity, and other notes from the week

A few minor notes this week from the world of cleantech investing:

  • Israeli wave-power firm SDE put out a press release announcing they're looking to do a public listing. The title also mentions they're looking for additional funding, for those interested...
  • Azuro, which has developed solutions to reduce the power consumption of semiconductor chips -- re: portable devices -- announced a $9M second round of funding, led by Miramar Venture Partners. Existing investors Benchmark Capital and TTP Ventures also participated "fully". The total amount invested in the firm so far is now $13.3M. While an example of a classic IT investment, the energy efficiency angle is also of interest to cleantech investors, a demonstration of the overlap cleantech markets often experience with other investment areas.
  • In another example of "cross-market" technologies of interest to cleantech investors, mesh wireless technology provider Zensys announced a Series C investment by Cisco. The company's systems are being targeted for use in networking home appliances, but the general mesh wireless market can often be applied toward the remote automation and control of sensors and devices for use in various cleantech applications (e.g., indoor air quality monitoring, energy device automation, factory automation, etc.), something we've discussed before. Zensys has now raised approx. $45M.
  • The launch of a new regional venture firm, Velocity Venture Capital, was announced this week. The seed- and early-stage investor, targeting Sacramento-area technology startups in software, communications, and clean technology, will be about a $20M fund.
  • I was waiting for an official press release to make the mention, but none have been forthcoming since the PE Week Wire mention a couple of weeks ago -- Rockport Capital Partners has reportedly closed on $155M in commitments for their next fund, targeted at $250M. Very encouraging news for the industry, and many kudos to Rockport.
  • In case you haven't heard about the upcoming Clean Edge and IBF Clean Tech Investor Summit, it was recently announced that SunPower CEO Tom Werner will be one of the keynotes at the event.


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