GE Energy Financial Services

About: GE Energy Financial Services’ (GE EFS) experts invest globally with a long-term view, backed by the best of GE’s technical know-how, financial strength and rigorous risk management, across the capital spectrum, in one of the world’s most capital-intensive industries, energy. GE EFS helps its customers and GE grow through new investments, strong partnerships and optimization of its more than US$22 billion in assets. In renewable energy, GE EFS is growing its portfolio of more than US$4 billion in assets in wind, solar, biomass, hydro and geothermal power. GE EFS is based in Stamford, Connecticut.

Key Personnel:
Alex Urquhart, President & CEO
Kevin Walsh, Managing Director, Power & Renewables

Their investment focus is in Power, Oil & Gas, Water, Venture Capital, Renewable Energy, Pipelines & Storage and Global Growth.
Venture Capital
– Current Communications, Ocean Power Delivery, Sub-One Technology, A123Systems, Think Global, Advanced Electron Beams, Soliant Energy, Danotek Motion Technologies, TPI Composites, Southwest Windpower (GE EFS provides mainly equity to them, except equity & debt to Ocean Power Delivery).
Renewable Energy – Alsleben Wind Farm, Babcock & Brown, Comverge, EnxCo, Forest Creek, Krusemark Wind Farm, Kumeyaay Wind, Noble Environmental Power, REpower Systems, Denker & Wulf,Serpa Solar Plant, Tawhiri Power, Theolia, Airtricity, Plutonic Power, SunPower, Scholl Canyon Landfill Gas, Invenergy Wind, Stanton Wind, Enel SpA, Renewable Energy Systems Americas, Horizon Wind Energy, Fotowatio, ACCIONA Energy (GE EFS provides mainly project equity to them, with minority of debt, debt & private equity, assets-for-equity swap, debt & project equity).

News: In June 2009, GE EFS announced it has signed an agreement with EarthFirst Canada Inc. to consider purchasing up to 300-megawatt Dokie Ridge Wind Project, the largest wind farm project under construction in British Columbia. Subject to satisfaction of conditions, including due diligence and internal approvals, GE EFS has agreed to form a partnership with Plutonic Power Corporation which, provided the acquisition is completed, will own and operate the project, located 1,100 km northeast of Vancouver, near Chetwynd. The project would represent GE EFS and Plutonic’s first wind energy investment in Canada and an expansion of their relationship from hydroelectric power development into wind energy.

In April 2009, Noble Environmental Power received long-term capital from GE and other for 3 NY windparks. GE EFS invested more than $200 million in the portfolio, which includes the Noble Altona, Chateaugay and Wethersfield Windparks. A syndicate of banks and financial institutions provided long-term debt, including letters of credit, totaling approximately $440 million. This long-term capital structure replaces construction financing used to build the Noble windparks. Noble was mentioned earlier in this post and it is majority owned by funds affiliated with JPMorgan Partners which are managed by CCMP Capital Advisors.

Kevin Walsh speaks about GE invests in electric vehicles and battery technology in this video or on vodpod. He also has a presentation “Policy Options Shaping Private Investments in Clean Tech” dated 1 May 2009 here.

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RockPort Capital Partners

About: RockPort Capital Partners, founded in 2000, is one of the pioneering Cleantech VC funds and focuses exclusively on the Energy and Power, Advanced Materials and Process and Prevention technology sectors. With offices in Boston, MA and Menlo Park, CA, RockPort has invested, to date, over $300M in more than 40 portfolio companies with breakthrough technologies that deliver significant economic value to large potential markets.

Key Personnel:
William E. “Wilber” James, Managing General Partner
David J. Prend, Managing General Partner
Alexander Ellis III, General Partner
Janet James, General Partner & COO
Charles J. “Chuck” McDermott , General Partner
Victor Westerlind, General Partner
Stoddard M. “Todd” Wilson, General Partner
Daniel Hullah, Principal
Dhiraj Malkani, Principal
Abe Yokell, Principal
Kevin Kopczynski, Associate

Energy & Power
– Aspen Products Group, Catalytic Solutions, Comverge, Deerpath Energy, Eka Systems, Enphase Energy, Evergreen Solar, ISE Corporation, Lilliputian Systems, Nanogram Corporation, Nanogram Devices, Northern Power Systems, Powerspan, PPT Research, Satcon Technology, Soliant Energy, Solyndra, Southwest Windpower, Sustainable Spaces, Think Global AS, Tioga Energy.
Resource Efficiency
Advanced Electron Beams, Aspen Aerogels, Catalytic Solutions, Davidson Instruments, EcoSMART Technologies, HydroPoint Data Systems, MicroSeismic, Powerspan, PPT Research, Second Rotation.
– Achates Power, Aspen Products Group, Catalytic Solutions, ISE Corporation, Think Global AS.
Advanced Materials
– Advanced Electron Beams, Aspen Aerogels, Catalytic Solutions, EcoSMART Technologies, Hycrete, Lilliputian Systems, Nanogram Corporation, Nanogram Devices, NeoPhotonics Corporation, PPT Research, Solyndra.
Green Building – Aspen Aerogels, Comverge, Deerpath Energy, Eka Systems, Enphase Energy, Evergreen Solar, Hycrete, HydroPoint Data Systems, Project FROG, Renaissance Lighting, Satcon Technology, Soliant Energy, Solyndra, Southwest Windpower, Sustainable Spaces, Tioga Energy.

Fundraising: RockPort raised its first fund of $125 million in 2001, closed its second fund of just over $260 million in January 2006 and raised its third fund of $453 million in June 2008 which is one of the largest venture funds focused on clean technology investments.


Nth Power

About: Nth Power is a venture capital firm based in San Francisco and is the first and most experienced venture capital firm funding promising startup companies in the growing sector of energy technology, materials and other related businesses. With $420 million under management in four funds and an investment record that begins in 1997, Nth Power is widely known and well regarded as the driving force behind many of the most successful energy technology companies.

Key Personnel:
Nancy Floyd, Founder & Managing Director (a good story on her here)
Bryant Tong, Managing Director
Tim Woodward, Managing Director
Matt Jones, Partner
Rodrigo Prudencio, Partner
Matthew Price, Partner
Brian Walsh, Sr. Associate
Elaine Erickson, Sr. Associate
(further details on their background are available on its website)

Energy Intelligence – BPL Global, Comverge (COMV), OptoElectronix, Silicon Energy* (ITRI), SmartSynch, SpectraSensors, SynapSense, Thetus.
Distributed Energy – Capstone Turbine* (CPST), Evergreen Solar* (ESLR), H2Gen, Northern Power Systems* (DESC), Proton Energy Systems* (DESC), Soliant Energy, Superprotonic, Tioga Energy, XeroCoat.
Energy Storage & Reliability – Imara, Nanogram Devices* (GB).
Advanced Materials – Accelergy, ARXX Corporation, Microposite, Nanogram Corporation, Nanogram Devices* (GB), Rive Technology, XeroCoat.
Transportation & Fuels – Imperium Renewables, Propel Biofuels.
Services – AllConnect, Nexant, Northern Power Systems* (DESC), Propel Biofuels, Terrapass, Tioga Energy.
*denotes past companies

Comment: In its website, Nth Power encourages entrepreneurs to submit their business plan via email or by mail. It lists down its investment criteria and states its initial investment typically ranges from $1-5 million and it often make further investments over time to a total of between $10-15 million. According to SVB Alliant’s “Earth, Wind, and Fire: A Cleantech Perspective”, Nth Power has 20 cleantech investments as of Dec 31, 2006. Nth Power also invested in California-based Pentadyne Power which develops flywheel energy storage systems.

News: Nth Power raises second venture capital fund
Publication: Advanced Battery Technology
Date: Wednesday, November 1 2000

Nth Power Technologies, Inc., a pioneer in the field of energy and power industry venture capital based in San Francisco, California, has raised $120.5 million from new and existing investors for its second venture capital fund. Investors in its $63 million first venture fund – ABB, Cinergy, Energy East, Electricte de France, and Hydro Quebec – are participating in Fund II. They are joined by new strategic and financial investors, including Alliant Energy, Avistar, Ballentine Capital, Bank of America Capital, Central Hudson Gas and Electric, CBIC World Markets, First Energy Corp., Itochu International Inc., Lehman Brothers Venture Capital, Meridian Energy (New Zealand), NiSource Development, Norsk Hydro (Norway), PanCanadian Petroleum Ltd., and Pacific Venture Capital (a unit of PGE Corp.). Nth’s investment focuses on distributed generation and storage; energy-related communications, information technology, and business services; power quality; and transmission and distribution automation.

nth power