Cleantech Open Announces Winners of 2011 National Business Competition and Global Ideas Competition

The "Academy Awards of Clean Technology" marked the grand finale of the Cleantech Open's yearlong National Business Competition.

The Grand Prize of $250,000 goes to Atmosphere Recovery, which makes laser-based gas analyzer systems for efficient manufacturing and advanced energy process control. Runners up in the National Business Competition are Indow Windows and PK Clean. Indow Windows also wins the 2011 National Sustainability Award. Energy Hub and Power Assure win 2011 Alumni Awards. Biofiltro of Chile wins the Cleantech Open 2011 Global Ideas Competition.

 

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., November 17, 2011 — The Cleantech Open is pleased to publish the complete list of winners that were announced at the Cleantech Open 2011 Global Forum last night. The “Academy Awards of Clean Technology” marked the grand finale of the Cleantech Open’s yearlong National Business Competition, as well as the culmination of the Cleantech Open Global Ideas Competition. 1,000 enthusiasts and experts, including contestants, alumni teams from previous years, mentors, venture capitalists, and sponsors attended the two-day festival of cleantech innovation and entrepreneurship.

2011 was another year of tremendous growth for the Cleantech Open, which now operates in six regions across the United States. Since the inception of the Cleantech Open six years ago, 593 companies have completed the non-profit organization’s entrepreneurship programs in the United States alone. Collectively, these companies have so far raised more than $500 million in funding.

“Congratulations to the 2011 winners and finalists, which represent the best in early-stage cleantech innovation and viable solutions to some of the world’s toughest challenges,” said Rex Northen, executive director of the Cleantech Open. “I would also like to express my sincere thanks to our sponsors, who make the Cleantech Open possible, as well as the tireless volunteers around the world who power the world’s largest cleantech accelerator.”

“Partnering with the Cleantech Open allows Chevron to identify and foster emerging technologies that improve the way the world produces and uses energy,” said Jim Davis, president of Chevron Energy Solutions. “As we mentor and support entrepreneurs, we can also develop new, valuable solutions for our customers.”

Note to editors: the Global Forum program guide provides descriptions of each team and can be downloaded here.

2011 National Grand Prize Winner
The National Grand Prize winner, which was selected from the five category winners of the prestigious Cleantech Open Business Competition, was awarded to Atmosphere Recovery, the winner of the Renewable Energy category, which makes unique, laser-based gas analyzer systems for efficient manufacturing and advanced energy process control. Two runners-up were also announced: Indow Windows and PK Clean.

The other four finalist teams, each of which was judged the winner of its respective category, were:

  • Air-Water-Waste — PK Clean, which converts the most painful form of waste into the most useful type of energy through a catalytic depolymerization process.
  • Energy Efficiency — Indow Windows, which manufactures thermal window inserts that press into place on the inside of a window frame to deliver double-pane window performance at a fraction of the price.
  • Green Building — Whole Trees Structures, which manufactures structural building systems made from round timber, the waste product of sustainably managed forests.
  • Smart Power — GridMobility, whose Color of the Electron™ signal technology enables business, industry, and consumers to choose electricity sources based on their personal preferences. 

2011 Alumni Award winner
Each year, the 2011 Alumni Award recognizes Cleantech Open alumni companies that achieved significant momentum during the year. To determine the winners, several factors are assessed, including capital investment raised, jobs created, and technical achievement. This year, the Alumni Award was awarded to two companies: Energy Hub, which raised $14.5M in Series B financing in 2011 and has created 30 jobs; and Power Assure, which this year raised $13.5M in Series B financing and has created 43 jobs.

2011 National Sustainability Award winner


The sustainability of the technologies and ideas of the teams that enter the Cleantech Open is given additional scrutiny by the mentors and judges, and each team receives specific mentoring to ensure this critical attribute is baked into each team’s business plan and investor pitch. This year’s National Sustainability Award goes to Indow Windows for its excellent alignment of business goals with an overall sustainability strategy. Two runner-ups were also named: Dragonfly Solutions and Sanergy.

2011 Cleantech Open Regional Winners
An overall winner for each region was also named, based on an aggregation of points awarded to the regional finalist teams throughout the judging process. Regional winners receive $10,000 in cash and services, which is in addition to the $20,000 in cash and services they were earlier awarded as regional finalists. The 2011 Cleantech Open regional winners are:

2011 Global Cleantech Open Ideas winner
For the second year, cleantech innovations from around the world were featured at the Cleantech Open. The Global Cleantech Open Ideas Competition looks to find ‘big ideas’ by working at a grassroots level and to support and foster those ideas by Cleantech Open host organizations worldwide. Orchestrated in conjunction with the Kauffman Foundation and Global Entrepreneurship Week, startups from around the world competed in their countries for national awards; the national winners then faced off at the Global Forum for a prize worth $100,000 in startup services. This year, more than 1,000 applications were submitted in countries around the world, with teams from 23 countries traveling to the Global Forum. Six teams were then selected to present to the audience:

A panel of expert judges determined the winner: Biofiltro of Chile.

HOW THE CLEANTECH OPEN BUSINESS COMPETITION WORKS
In June 2011, the Cleantech Open selected 120 regional semifinalists from a pool of nearly 300 entries submitted by talented cleantech entrepreneurs in six regions across the United States. From these 120 teams, regional judging panels selected 21 finalist teams, each of which received $20,000 in cash and services, with the overall winner for each region receiving an additional $10,000 in cash and services. All 21 finalist teams and 5 additional regional sustainability finalists then went on to compete at the Global Forum in front of a live judging panel that selected 5 category winners, each of which took home $10,000 in cash and services. Judges then selected the National Grand Prize winner (which receives $250,000 in seed investment and services) from the 5 category winners. A separate panel of judges selected the National Sustainability Prize winner (which receives $10,000 in cash and services). 

CLEANTECH OPEN SPONSORS
The Cleantech Open is made possible by the generous support provided by our Global Partner, Chevron; National Education Partner, University of Phoenix; and National Sponsors, Autodesk and Wells Fargo. Regional competitions are additionally sponsored by the following corporate partners: Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati (multi-region), Deloitte (multi-region), Jones Lang Lasalle (multi-region), The Dow Chemical Company (multi-region), PricewaterhouseCoopers (multi-region), CTSI, CalCEF, Commercial Energy, Faegre & Benson, Google, Grundfos, Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, Mintz Levin, Patton Boggs, PG&E, Reed Smith, and many others. 

ABOUT THE CLEANTECH OPEN
The Cleantech Open runs the world’s largest cleantech accelerator. Its mission is to find, fund and foster entrepreneurs with big ideas that address today’s most urgent energy, environmental and economic challenges. A 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, the Cleantech Open provides the infrastructure, expertise and strategic relationships that turn clever ideas into successful global cleantech companies. Since 2006, through its one-of-a-kind annual business competition and mentorship program, the Cleantech Open has enabled 593 clean-technology startups to bring their breakthrough ideas to fruition, helped alumni contestants raise over $500M in external capital, and created thousands of green-collar jobs. Fueled by a global network of more than 1,000 volunteers and sponsors, the Cleantech Open unites the public and private sectors in a shared vision for making America’s and the world’s cleantech sectors a thriving economic engine. For more information, visit www.cleantechopen.org, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

For more information:
Tim Cox, PR Chair, Cleantech Open
+1-650-369-7784 — tim@zingpr.com