Cleantech Open and Ignite Clean Energy Agree To CombinePosted by Katie Payer at Thu Feb 25 15:30:00 +0000 2010
We've been working diligently over the past few months to make a partnership with the Cleantech Open and Boston's Ignite Clean Energy a reality. This partnership will create the world's largest cleantech business competition, anchored in the two leading hubs of cleantech innovation in the United States, and offering coast-to-coast coverage to attract contestants, funding, and sponsors.
Clark Waterfall, chairman of the 2008 and 2009 ICE competitions, had this to say about the move: "The Ignite Clean Energy Competition has grown exponentially in the past several years due to the overwhelming demand to build on the cleantech industry in New England and throughout the nation. We were in search of opportunities that would allow our continued growth while offering the same competitive level of resources and expertise to our contestants. Joining with the Cleantech Open does exactly that and we are excited to be a part of an impressive national team."
For his part, Cleantech Open Executive Director Rex Northen sees the partnership as an opportunity to rejoin with the organization that created the original blueprint for the Cleantech Open. "The Cleantech Open has grown over the past few years from its roots in California to a network of regional competitions and training programs with operations in Silicon Valley, Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis - and now, Boston. The Ignite Clean Energy Competition provided the model that the Cleantech Open followed to help invigorate our cleantech industry nationally," said Northen. "Joining with ICE unites the two largest cleantech business competitions, ensures the highest quality entrepreneurial training and mentorship from coast to coast, and will graduate contestants that will become competitive cleantech entrepreneurs in a ferocious global marketplace."
ICE, widely recognized as the first cleantech competition of its kind, celebrated its fifth year in November 2009. Beginning in 2004 with less than 30 teams, the competition grew to 83 contestants in 2009 and expanded to include more than a dozen team building and kick off events throughout the East Coast of the US. The Cleantech Open is the largest cleantech competition in the country and the world, holding annual regional competitions throughout the nation and the first Global Cleantech Ideas competition held in 2009. Together, the two competitions attracted entries from 361 companies in 2009 and distributed over 1 million in cash and prizes. Additionally, both organizations have helped cleantech companies raise over $220 million in venture capital, secure over $15 million in research funding, and tens of millions in public grants and loans.
Read more about this great new parnership in the press release, which can be found here.