Spotlight on Cleantech Start-Ups

Tuesday, July 24, 2012 5:00pm-7:30pm PDT Streamed Panel Discussion 5:30pm - 7:00pm PDT / 8:30pm - 10:00pm EDT / 2:30 - 4:00 (Paris-Frankfurt)


Cleantech startups in recent years have been encountering an ever widening chasm in their quest to achieve commercial viability. Just a few reasons include the continued tepid economy, expiring government tax credits and grants, political antipathy, lack of international agreements to curtail greenhouse gases, and a reluctance of venture capitalists to commit significant funding. But these general obstacles do not preclude promising new companies with innovative technologies which can meet unfulfilled market demand.

In this meeting, we’ll showcase several cleantech startups which we believe have the potential to ultimately become leaders in offering solutions which grow the clean energy economy. We’ll have several prominent Venture Capitalists participating to offer their expert advice.





5:00pm - 5:30pm



5:30pm - 5:45pm


Cleantech Venture Funding Trends: PwC MoneyTree™ Report

Presented by:




  Steve Bengston, Managing Director of Emerging Company Services



5:45pm - 6:15pm

Panel Discussion: What is the Best Exit Strategy for Cleantech Startups?


Some of the questions we’ll address in this meeting are:

  • What are the primary obstacles to achieving commercial viability, and what are startups and VCs doing to overcome these obstacles?
  • Do corporations offer a purchase price commensurate with anticipated earnings and risks when acquiring cleantech startups? How does our industry compare to IT or Biotech?
  • Are there sufficient funds for early-stage cleantech startups, or are Venture Capitalists holding back on these perceived high-risk opportunities?
  • What are the primary criteria used by Venture Capitalists when assessing whether to invest in a cleantech startup? How have they changed in the past five years?
  • Are the financing companies, including not only VCs but corporations and government, shying away from infrastructure and supply-side startups in favor of the often less risky software-based and demand-side startups?
  • Is Crowdsourcing an effective financing option?
  • Will Mergers and Acquisitions continue to increase as part of a cleantech sector consolidation?
  • What other options do viable cleantech startups consider for exit strategies in this challenging market environment? Is an Initial Public Offering (IPO) a preferred strategy?
  • Why do some companies choose to remain privately held, and is this a growing trend?




  Bank of America Merrill Lynch

  Joseph Osha, Head of Alternative Energy Research







  Mark Waring, Director, Business Strategy






  Steve Goldberg, Partner 










  Steve Bengston, Managing Director of Emerging Company Services




6:15pm - 6:35pm


1st DEMO


DirectNuEnergy: 10 minutes




  Gloria Maceiko, CEO





DirectNu Energy Corporation develops renewable energy systems with advanced integrated technology to store and manage wind, solar and electric energy. The company, founded in 2009, is headquartered in San Jose, California with global sales, manufacturing and distribution centers in the United States, Europe and Asia. DirectNu Energy provides a one-stop shop packaged systems with lease or PPA financing for Middle Market Commercial customers.



5 minutes - Panel Q&A

5 minutes - Audience Q&A

6:35pm - 6:55pm

2nd DEMO


Avego: 10 minutes




  Teresa Gaynor, Sr. Project Manager 





Avego is a global provider of software, hardware and professional services for improving the efficiency of passenger transportation. Using GPS, web and mobile technologies, Avego’s real-time information systems make seat capacity known and available to passengers, provide convenient ticket purchasing options, and enable extensive reporting capabilities.




5 minutes - Panel Q&A

5 minutes - Audience Q&A

6:55pm - 7:15pm

3rd DEMO


GRIDiant: 10 minutes




  Andy Colman, CEO





GRIDiant offers GRIDmaster™ Advanced Grid Management (AGM) software for inclusion in utility vendors’ integrated 21st Century Smart Grid hardware and software solutions. GRIDmaster is powered by GRIDfast™, the first, true real-time, nonlinear, modeling, simulation, and multi-objective, optimization and load/resource/asset ranking engine for grid planning and operations. GRIDmaster is patented, and has been proven on utility transmission and distribution systems over a 10-year period on T&D grid models including Pepco, Southern California Edison, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, Silicon Valley Power, FERC, CA ISO and the California Energy Commission.




5 minutes - Panel Q&A

5 minutes - Audience Q&A

7:15pm - 7:35pm

4th DEMO


SCS Renewables: 10 minutes



  SCS Renewables

  Haresh Patel, CEO





SCS Renewables launched a premier finance brokerage platform for renewable energy project finance earlier this year. SCS’S platform dramatically lowers costs associated with solar project origination and financing. It offers financiers a rapid market entry to efficiently deploy their capital. SCS Renewables utilizes its innovative and patent pending methodology for vetting and scoring renewable energy projects, combining qualification and underwriting criteria from over 25 investment sources with over $2B in capital available.




5 minutes - Panel Q&A

5 minutes - Audience Q&A

7:35pm - 8:00pm

Drinks & Networking


View Full Biographies Here




PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

488 Almaden Boulevard, Suite 1800

San Jose, California 95110





If you are new to AGRION, this meeting can begin your complimentary trial period to allow you to get a better understanding of who we are and what we do.

After this trial period, we require an annual subscription fee determined by the number of active employees from your company. More information regarding membership can be found here (specific packages for startups and non-profits are available upon request).