Because opening up the site just wasn't enough, apparently: Facebook is branching into a new role as an investor. The company has announced a new program called FBFund to provide grants to developers who are interested in creating applications for the Facebook Platform. FBFund, with cash infused by Facebook investors Accel Partners and the Founders Fund, will start with $10 million and will provide $25,000-$250,000 grants to developers who apply for the program. The fund's investment committee will consist of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, vice president of product marketing and operations Charmath Palihapitaya, and board … Read more
DAVIS, Calif.--What kind of clean tech product will thrive over the long term?
"Something that doesn't defy laws of physics, and there are plenty of those," said Rodrigo Prudencio, a partner with Nth Power LLC. The venture capital firm helped Evergreen Solar and Imperium Renewables to get off the ground.
Nobody at the AlwaysOn Going Green conference was making bold predictions about what might become the Google of green tech, but the sector is expected to continue expanding at a rapid clip.
Clean tech companies receive the third largest amount of venture capital, a staggering increase … Read more
Another day, another clump of Facebook financial dirt.
Kara Swisher at All Things Digital wrote early Tuesday that "according to sources," Facebook is considering the possibility of a massive new investment round. If this turns out to be true, it could lift the company's much-talked-about valuation even further into the stratosphere. Facebook's last investment round, a $25 million bounty in 2006, pushed its pre-money valuation to about $525 million. This rumored new round, which Swisher claims is "well beyond" that scope, could solidify Facebook's position in the $6 billion to $10 billion club (… Read more
Venture investment firm Technology Partners on Tuesday announced it has raised a $300 million fund to invest in clean-technology and life science companies.
Heading up the clean-tech portion of that fund is Ira Ehrenpreis, who has been investing in the sector for several years. Among his investments is high-end electric-vehicle producer Tesla Motors, biofuels company Imperium Renewables and water treatment firm Sensicore. With so much investment going into the clean-tech area, I asked Ehrenpreis to provide a snapshot on clean-tech investing.
Q: With all the activity in clean-tech venture capital, are you concerned that there is too much money chasing … Read more
The green-tech sector is getting hot for stock investments these days, in part because of some very hot recent solar IPOs, such as that of First Solar. As with everything, personal investors need to do their homework. Here's a few places to get started.
I follow three Web sites (and have occasionally written for or been interviewed by each of them) catering to investors in the energy and green-tech sector.
RenewableEnergyStocks.com is a content-rich site run by financial public-relations firm Investor Ideas, a subsidiary of Econ Corporate Services. Since the company is typically paid by the companies, you … Read more
Two recent reports raise questions about the long-term impact of the current venture investment boom in clean technologies. Although neither raises any warning signs specifically, they reminded me of the challenges of making clean energy mainstream.
Topline Strategy on Monday published results of an analysis that found venture capitalists steeped in more established industries of life sciences and IT will have a tough go of it in clean tech.
With its heavy emphasis on the energy industry, the clean--or green--tech segment faces numerous challenges, including different financial models and a complex regulatory environment.
A few specialized firms with experiences in … Read more
Perhaps it's not surprising that a company founded on the idea of automation hones in on efficiency when it comes to clean tech.
Over the past year, IBM has started working with a handful of energy efficiency and water conservation start-ups, betting that those technologies will find steady demand.
"So far, we've seen a trickle of the capital needed to make scalable changes. One thought is to see if we can dramatically increase efficiency and reduce waste to free up capital," said Andrew (Drew) Clark, director of strategy at IBM's Venture Capital Group.
Around 10 … Read more
Ten leading investment banks that helped several hundred technology companies make initial public offerings during the dot-com bubble of the late 1990s can't be sued for antitrust violations, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday.
In a 7-1 decision (PDF) authored by Justice Stephen Breyer, the majority dismissed arguments made by 60 investors who filed a pair of class-action antitrust suits against the banks in January 2002.
The investors had claimed that the banks had behaved anticompetitively by imposing special conditions on top of the agreed-upon IPO share prices and commission. According to the high court opinion, those conditions … Read more
In-Q-Tel, a private investment firm launched by the CIA to support U.S. intelligence agencies, has invested in image sensor maker Pixim, the company said Wednesday.
The investment was part of a $15 million funding round announced in March that also included Tallwood Venture Capital, Ridgewood Capital and the Mayfield Fund.
Pixim sells digital image sensors and associated software used in surveillance cameras. The technology is geared to work in particular with difficult lighting conditions. The company's Orca chips are used in more than 100 camera models available today.
"In-Q-Tel invested in Pixim because it offers government and … Read more
Tioga Energy on Wednesday said that it has received $10 million in initial funding to launch its solar power services business.
The company is one of a handful that is trying to bring project financing to organizations that want to avoid the large capital outlay associated with solar electricity.
Tioga Energy will work with partners to install panels on commercial and government buildings. Once installed, it will own the panels and handle the ongoing maintenance.
The idea behind these contracts, called purchased power agreements (PPAs), is that the customer pays for the energy generated by solar panels at a prearranged … Read more