The Cleantech Open Launches USA's Richest Clean Tech Business Competition

Early Stage Innovators to Strive For More Than Half a Million Dollars
In Cash and Prizes

San Jose, Calif., April 9, 2007 — Clean Tech Open, the organization dedicated to helping great ideas become viable businesses that will drive the new green economy, is calling all early-stage clean technology companies and individuals with great ideas to compete for prizes in the third annual Clean Tech Open California competition — the USA's richest clean tech business plan contest.

This year's competition will give awards valued at a total of more than $600,000 to early-stage innovators in six critical technology categories: renewable energy, transportation, smart power, energy efficiency, green building, and air/water/waste management. In addition to prizes for the winners, finalists have the opportunity to engage in six months of mentorship and networking exercises including business-process workshops, technology symposia, and presentations designed to impart the skills and knowledge needed for success.

Winners in each of the six categories will receive a "$100,000 Start-Up in a Box" prize package that includes all of the business essentials necessary to help take an innovative clean technology idea from concept to sustainable business. Each category prize includes $50,000 cash from one of the category prize sponsors, as well as in-kind business services, including office space, and legal, financial and marketing services, worth another $50,000 (see below).

"The Cleantech Open's 2008 California competition prize package goes above and beyond other awards and is not typically available to early-stage start-ups," said Michael Santullo, Clean Tech Open Co-Founder. "We also provide finalists with the opportunity to meet and get to know potential investors, business leaders, government officials and other high profile individuals who can help them make their dreams a reality."

The Cleantech Open competition alumni from the past two years have also made considerable progress in obtaining additional financing with more than $45 million in venture capital being raised so far. For example, Cool Earth Solar, based in Livermore, California, recently closed $21 million in Series A funding to develop and commercialize proprietary Concentrated Photovoltaic (CPV) technology, which the company will use to generate electricity.

"The Cleantech Open is a platform for organizations such as Cool Earth Solar to transition from the research and development stage to becoming a full fledged business," said Eric Cummings, Founder, Cool Earth Solar. "Our ability to secure the financing to build our company was directly related to our becoming a finalist in Clean Tech Open's 2006 competition."

This year's prize package sponsors include AMD, Lexus, Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, Siemens TTB and Southern California Edison. In kind services will be donated by Accretive Solutions accounting and finance, MacCorkle Insurance Service, MarketWire wire services, Moyo Group IT services, Page One Public Relations, PeopleConnect staffing, Plug and Play Tech Center, Positive Impact Partner marketing services, San Jose Bio Center, and the law firm of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

How to Enter

Interested individuals and groups should complete and submit Clean Tech Open’s competition application form along with a three-page executive summary of their clean technology idea at www.cleantechopen.com before June 30, 2008. The entry fee is $250 per team, which is reduced to $150 if the team is comprised entirely of full-time students, or if the entry is received before June 15. Competition details, eligibility criteria and other information are available at www.cleantechopen.com under COMPETITION.

About the Cleantech Open
The Cleantech Open brings together a unique and powerful combination of entrepreneurs, researchers, environmentalists, investors, business professionals and others to drive economic growth and ensure environmental sustainability. By giving winners early-stage capital and expertise, the 2008 California competition speeds clean technologies from lab to market. The goal is to foster innovative new businesses focused on energy efficiency, smart power, renewable energy, transportation, green building materials, pollution control and resource management. The competition thrives on the state's strong business and governmental support for innovation, technology and environmental protection to create rich soil for the growth of clean technology enterprises that foster a healthy natural environment. To learn more, please visit: www.cleantechopen.com

The Cleantech Open is sponsored by Acterra: Action for a Sustainable Earth, a 501(c) (3) nonprofit based in Palo Alto, California. The competition is supported by a diverse array of businesses, educational institutions, government leaders and private individuals, and run by a dedicated group of volunteers including business professionals, scientists, environmentalists and entrepreneurs.


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Patricia Colby
Page One Public Relations
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