Sunday, June 25, 2006

Coaltek, Prometheus, Sionyx, Cilion, and week-end catchups

Two or three recent cleantech fundings scooped by Dan at PE Week Wire on Friday:
  • Coaltek, which raised a $7.7mm Series A just this past November, has apparently raised a subsequent $5mm Series B-1 inside round. All existing investors appear to have participated, according to PEWW.
  • Prometheus Energy, which is harvesting landfill methane and turning it into liquid natural gas for fueling fleets, has apparently taken in a $20.2mm equity infusion and arranged a $25mm line of credit. Dan reports that the funders include CryoFuel, Cascadia Energy Services, Sowood Capital and Libra Natural Resources. The company also reports in the Seattle PI article that their funders have pledged another $200mm in capital for future LFG projects. The company claims that part of their "secret sauce" is the ability of their technology to be deployed at a smaller scale than existing technologies, opening up more landfills and other gas sources as profitable feedstock locations.
  • Cleantech? Hard to tell. But secretive Sionyx has apparently raised $750k out of a $1.5mm Series A, with nanotech funder Harris & Harris providing this first portion. Sionyx doesn't have much available information, but according to this article (scroll down), it's a spin out from Harvard. If this recent patent filed by the two Harvard researchers noted in the BBJ article is any gauge, the company's technology may be applicable for cleantech applications like silicon-based solar PV.
  • A new ethanol company, Cilion, has been formed by Vinod Khosla and Western Milling, with the intention of standardizing 55mm gpy plants and rolling out 8 of them by the end of 2008 (the first three being in California). No financial terms have been announced. Vinod has been making a series of big bets on ethanol lately...
Other news and notes: Good clean energy section in Popular Mechanics... Here's a useful report on climate change and best business practices from WRI... Several leading cleantech investors share their thoughts ("biodiesel, ethanol and solar")... Some useful facts on biofuels from Worldwatch... Can't wait for your Tesla or Wrightspeed? Here's a review of the ZENN from Feel Good Cars...

It's hard to ignore that all of the above is energy-related news. It just reflects where the media's and most investors' attentions are focused right now, and there's been too much work lately to be more proactive in this regard. But we'll try to highlight some of the less talked about (but very deserving) areas of clean technology once things settle down a bit...


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