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Transforming a Sector: M&A in Cleantech

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011, 8:30am - 11:30am PST

Worldwide through Q3 2010, 580 cleantech companies merged or were bought out in deals totaling about $27 billion, while just 64 companies raised $5.27 billion in IPOs (Cleantech Group and Deloitte & Touche). It seems that the dream of cleantech entrepreneurs for wildly successful public offerings has faded while a different exit strategy for growth and wealth has taken center stage: Mergers & Acquisitions. While the difficult market has certainly been a factor in the fewer number of IPOs this year, perhaps a greater cause for the trend is the symbiotic needs of the players involved. Cleantech startups need to broaden their reach and deepen their pockets while larger established corporations need clean technologies integrated into their own business strategies.

Is this trend of Cleantech M&As expected to continue? How will it affect the futures of cleantech companies and the industry as a whole? How are U.S. corporations fairing in comparison with European and Asian companies? Are Cleantech M&As structured any differently than deals from more established industries? How can startups position themselves to attract acquisition? Join our discussion on M&A trends and strategies, tapping the perspectives of cleantech entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, attorneys and M&A specialists.


08:30am:    Reception, Networking and Continental Breakfast

08:50am:    Welcome and Introduction

09:00am:    Panel Discussion Begins


1.    Tracking the Trends: 2011 Expectations

  • Many analysts are calling for an uptick in M&A activity in 2011. Will cleantech deals experience the same or greater lift? Is the cleantech industry losing any appeal or will it continue to be a favored category for acquisitions?.
  • Are more cleantech IPOs expected with the slight improvement in market conditions or is the M&A strategy better for the industry and hence a trend that is here to stay?


2.    Domestic versus International Activity

  • Cleantech Group reported that in 2009, Asia led cleantech M&A activity with 35% of all deals, followed by Europe at 31% and North America at 26%. Was this a trend that continued in 2010 and is it expected to continue for 2011? Why is the U.S. not leading the pack?
  • Why are foreign corporations currently more active in M&As than U.S. companies?


3.    For Prospective Acquirers

  • What milestones should a new company reach before considering them for a merger or acquisition?
  • What scenarios would suggest a merger? An acquisition?
  • With current limitations on access to capital, what strategies are being used to finance deals?
  • How is the cleantech acquirer landscape different from those of recent past? (software/semiconductor/telecom etc.)


4.    For Prospective Targets

  • What can very young companies do to build a successful foundation for a straightforward M&A in their future?
  • For companies that started with the goal of an IPO exit, how can they reposition themselves for the M&A market?
  • What is the most effective way to announce to the business community one’s interest in an M&A opportunity?
  • When should a company say no to an M&A proposal?
  • What points in leadership and company control are negotiable in an M&A deal? Non-negotiable?


10:30am:    End of Panel Discussion: Q&A, Networking

11:30am:    End of Conference


Battery Ventures, Mike Dauber, Partner
Reed Smith, Armando Castro, Partner
SiVal Advisors, Dr. Naveen Bewtra, VP Cleantech
The Westly Group, Michael C. Dorsey, Managing Partner


Deloitte & Touche LLP, Garrett Herbert, Partner, M&A Transaction Services


Download the Agenda


Location and Directions:

Garden Court Hotel @ 520 Cowper St. in Palo Alto, CA

Driving: From 101 (North or South): Exit University Avenue, go west. Make a left onto Cowper Street. Hotel is on the right-hand side on the first block.
From 280 (North or South): Exit Sand Hill Road, head east. Turn right onto Arboretum Road. Make a left onto Palm, which turns into University Avenue. Turn right onto Cowper Street. Hotel is on the right side on the first block.

Public Transit:Take Caltrain to the Palo Alto stop. Upon leaving the train station follow University Avenue 0.4 miles (6 blocks) to Cowper St. and turn right. The Garden Court is half of a block down on the right hand side.



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